The second article in this series on the “WHY’ question asked by so many advocates. Why do they (our government, BLM, DOI, Politicians like Rep Chris Stewart) get away with blatant lies? WHY doesn’t anyone see what is really happening? WHY can’t we protect our wild horses?
©CAES 2018, Val Cecama-Hogsett
I was doing research recently on systematic desensitization and came across a video done by Simply Psych on Piaget’s Cognitive Theory.
I watched a situation that I compare to the theory, many call a conspiracy theory, about the Iraq war. That theory was that our (American) involvement was really about oil, not weapons of mass extinction. First, there was the introduction of the idea, Iraq gassing their own people, in our case an advisory council recommended the killing of all horses the BLM deemed excess.
Then we had the accommodation phase of cognitive theory. In the Iraq example we had the constant news reports, the information on the possible types of gas, the effects of those gasses, and the question, ‘could this be used against us”. In the case of the horses, we have town hall meetings, certain politicians who are funded heavily by the livestock industry who wants the horses gone, speaking about how the horses are starving, if we love them shouldn’t we do something. The media who will not report what we are saying, which is we know there is no crisis, we know the photo being used of a starving mare and her foal are from one isolated incident, not the norm. But the public, who by a majority, including members of Congress voting on the action to be taken will not hear our ‘side of the story’. So the people are being desensitized to killing the horses or invading Iraq, by a constant stream of information supporting a fake crisis that demands we take action.
How, do I as an advocate do anything about this? How do we take control of a situation that is so corrupt, and powerful that even a formal ethics complaint against the main voice in Congress telling the lie, is not even heard or talked about? We are now seen as conspiracy theorists, and no one will listen. We are blacklisted in the media, even other advocate groups choking any income we get for lawsuits, and telling people we are wrong about laws we know are broken, even convincing people to sign petitions to support FY 2018 Department of Interior Senate bill, that didn’t even exist because it was never heard by the Senate. How do you reconstruct the schema of a nation?
We need to compare the brain scans of people who are animal abusers, proving the link of psychopathy to the employees like this veterinarian, the politician, and others who can speak about death of a living being as if it is something good, or necessary, knowing it is a lie that will achieve the agenda of those providing money to them. I believe the brain scans would be similar to those of animal or even human abusers.
In this video linked below The Moth, a name James Fallon gives himself, he reaches a conclusion that is a good question. Does society need sociopaths? This question is based on the need for some professions to have people performing tasks that keep empathy separate from the job they perform. He uses the example of a surgeon. Would the surgeon be as effective or successful at his job if he were experiencing high levels of empathy? When we transfer this question and assumption of the need to be a sociopath to be good at your job, in some careers, we can ask the same of a veterinarian, or these wildlife managers, politicians and others that can recommend experimenting on sentient beings, or even the death of healthy animals.
Research into the empathy of the veterinarian who does animal research has not been heavily done but the field is beginning to receive some mandates on this. The Animal Welfare Institute talks about this in a quote from another report, found in Halpern-Lewis, 1996:
“There are now signs also in the USA that the importance of a positive human-animal relationship in the research laboratory is appreciated more seriously, and that “in addition to knowledge and skills, primary attributes [of animal research personnel] must be feelings of compassion and sensitivity toward animals”
So how do we compete with money, power, and behavior dominated by sociopathic behavior while those same entities are employing the weapons of cognitive theory and systematic desensitization to gain the trust of the majority?
When this author can find some answer to this there will be a part three in this series, but that may be a long time given the lack of research in the connection of sociopathic behavior in what seems to be ‘normal’ making of laws that solve a fake ‘crisis.
Psychological Warfare Tactics are being used to further the agenda of commercial industry seeking the destruction of American Wild Horses.
CAES – Val Cecama-Hogsett
27 April 2018
In 2015 the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) asked for a study to be done on how to deal with the public’s reactions to wild horse management issues such as inhumane gathers, being stampeded by a helicopter when ready to foal, young foals having their hooves literally worn off during a helicopter stampede, then the sterilization of mares, many of them pregnant and aborting foals, not the killing, either through slaughter or euthanasia of 100,000 wild horses.
We were told about this by a Department of Labor employee who had a sit-down with then Director of the National Wild Horse & Burro program at the BLM, Dean Bolstad. We have tried to get a copy of that report through FOIA and other contacts, but it is apparently a top-secret, publicly paid for study (illegal).
What is very clear, and what we talked about when the National Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Council recommended killing the wild horses in holding, is that it was part of the plan. The advisory council was used by BLM to make this first suggestion of killing animals to alleviate the mess they had made in a flawed management program of 40 plus years.
Social Cognitive Theory, what is it?
Schemas are the basic building blocks of cognitive theory and enable us to form a mental representation of the world. Piaget (1952, p. 7) defined a schema as:
“a cohesive, repeatable action sequence possessing component actions that are tightly interconnected and governed by a core meaning.”
Wadsworth (2004) describes schemata (pl. for schema) as “index cards’ filed in the brain, each one telling an individual how to react to incoming stimuli or information.”
ByPass Publishing, Published on Sep 16, 2013
This is how a child develops what we would call their views, opinions, knowledge, etc. A series of lessons learned through outside input. So how is this theory combined with systematic desensitization to redirect, in our case the American public?
When the government did this study, we believe the answer given to ‘deal with us’ was to reprogram the public to believe that there is a crisis, in our case, starving and overpopulation of wild horses, and a financial crisis to care for those warehoused in federal and leased long-term holding. So what is needed to reprogram? a constant message given in town hall meetings, closed-door summits, told through media and presented at panel discussions on land or wild horse management. This is Systematic Desensitization.
How is reprogramming achieved in adults? It seems we have already learned about the wild horses, as advocates our experience and beliefs are developed around the history, the culture, and the important role they had in creating our country. We (advocates) revere them as spiritual, and historical icons. So the suggestion by the Advisory Council was the ‘shock’ phase. This phase begins the reprogramming.
The public and unfamiliar lawmakers (to the issues surrounding wild horses) saw this as an absurdity, and the BLM played the role of the reassuring government of its people. Telling us ‘you have just been traumatized, you’re safe, we’ll look into this’.
The second major subfunction in cognitive theory is observational learning where it concerns cognitive representational processes. Retention of the information to reprogram, the necessity for killing horses in our case. Retention involves the processing of new information and reorganizing that information conveyed by scripted inputs
for memory representation. Without absorbing the idea of death, and then hearing the reasons (panel discussion, media, summit) so that we can find a place for that information, we cannot begin to question if it was really absurd.
This second step is where the public and lawmakers are beginning to be more used to the topic, it isn’t a shock anymore, and because humans want to accept information, want to accept what the leaders in a field of study, or the doctors treating their child, we want to understand and find a way to accept the suggestion of death. We are being desensitized. ( Again this ‘we’ speaks to the majority of the public, and the lawmakers who do not know the issue before the campaign to reprogram started).
Public reaction and decision making are being facilitated by the gradual desensitization to and normalization of killing the horses in the social ecology, particularly in an environment overshadowed by ongoing, extreme preservation-political conflict. This is often perpetrated by persons in positions of power to affect their own agendas. This is called the production processes in cognitive theory or assimilation.
The final stage is a stage called the accommodation. What needs to be put out there to let lawmakers feel good about the decision. What justifies the end, it has to be something that makes the killing acceptable. At this stage, the public and the lawmakers feel there is no other option, and this choice will leave 27,000 healthy horses. We have been desensitized to and went from killing being absurd to killing is necessary.
We have been reprogrammed to believe this management plan is the only one that will work. We believe there is a crisis because we have heard it, read it and heard about it so many times. We accept it and feel ‘okay’ with the decision to kill because it was now the best option…
What is not seen by the masses, the unknowing lawmakers and the media is what the people who would not accept the reprogramming saw, the truth about the fake crisis, truth about other solutions that are humane, fiscally responsible. Those opposing the reprogrammers with power are called emotional, or dishonest for their own financial gain, or even conspiracy theorists because we all know our government would never launch this massive media blitz and engage in psychological warfare on their own citizens, or would they?
“…the acquisition of knowledge and skills regarding innovations is necessary, but not sufficient for their adoption in practice. A number of factors determine whether people will act on what they have learned. Environmental inducements serve as one set of regulators. Adoptive behavior is also highly susceptible to incentive influences, which may take the form of material, social, or self-evaluative outcomes. Some of the motivating incentives derive from the utility of the adoptive behavior. The greater the relative benefits provided by an innovation, the higher is the incentive to adopt it(Ostlund, 1974; Rogers & Shoemaker, 1971). However, benefits cannot be experienced until the new practices are tried. Promoters, therefore, strive to get people to adopt new practices by altering their preferences and beliefs about likely outcomes, mainly by enlisting vicarious incentives. Advocates of new technologies and ideologies create expectations that they offer better solutions than established ways do. Modeled benefits increase adoptive decisions.” Bandura
“Shock – the advisory council and the possibility of crisis
Desensitization – media, meetings, speeches, recommendations to Congress, needing to find a resolution because there is a crisis, the process of upset or fear, then calming, then fear, then calming…..etc.etc.
Acceptance – reaching the conclusion that the shock really is the only solution i.e. passing the law to a kill.” – CAES
The addition of social media to mainstream media outlets and physical meetings has allowed for the dissemination of false information at a faster pace than ever before. The information published in unchecked for accuracy, the author and that author’s motivations are not considered. There is no longer an editor or publisher that worries about their reputation for these values we learned to count on for retrieving news and research, to then make decisions about right and wrong, to vote for people or actions or laws. We have to again learn to adapt, we need to become either a blind-follower or a curious observer ready to investigate and discern fact and fiction. This is a case where the public and lawmakers must realize they have been victims of this psychological warfare to lead them into war with those of us who have not been victims, those of us who see the big picture, the truth, and the right path that must be taken.
“…the acquisition of knowledge and skills regarding innovations is necessary, but not sufficient for their adoption in practice. A number of factors determine whether people will act on what they have learned. Environmental inducements serve as one set of regulators. Adoptive behavior is also highly susceptible to incentive influences, which may take the form of material, social, or self-evaluative outcomes. Some of the motivating incentives derive from the utility of the adoptive behavior. The greater the relative benefits provided by an innovation, the higher is the incentive to adopt it (Ostlund, 1974; Rogers & Shoemaker, 1971). However, benefits cannot be experienced until the new practices are tried. Promoters, therefore, strive to get people to adopt new practices by altering their preferences and beliefs about likely outcomes, mainly by enlisting vicarious incentives. Advocates of new technologies and ideologies create expectations that they offer better solutions than established ways do. Modeled benefits increase adoptive decisions.” BanduraThe addition of social media to mainstream media outlets and physical meetings has allowed for the dissemination of false information at a faster pace than ever before. The information published in unchecked for accuracy, the author, and that author’s motivations are not considered. There is no longer an editor or publisher that worries about their reputation for these values we learned to count on for retrieving news and research, to then make decisions about right and wrong, to vote for people or actions or laws. We have to again learn to adapt, we need to become either a blind-follower or a curious observer ready to investigate and discern fact and fiction. This is a case where the public and lawmakers must realize they have been victims of this psychological warfare to lead them into war with those of us who have not been victims, those of us who see the big picture, the truth, and the right path that must be taken.
Remember that many people who may seem to be doing the right thing, may have the motivation to follow the powerful, and their original mission may change. You must do the work, the research, and look at the big picture, ask questions, and don’t be fooled by subliminal messages, open your eyes wide so you see them for what they really are.
Management Principally for Wild Horse and Burro on Federally Mandated Preserves
The excuse for not doing that is that the Federal Land Policy Management Act (FLPMA), passed into law after the WFRHBA, mandated public lands management use a multiple-use approach. However, the part conveniently ignored is the latter part of FLPMA which states that it does not override existing federal land use acts. Several court cases have ruled that the WFRHBA is a federal land use act or law. Therefore, FLPMA cannot override the management of the wild horse preserves principally for the horses. We have shared the excerpt from FLPMA below:
EFFECT ON EXISTING RIGHTS;
REPEAL OF EXISTING LAWS; SEVERABILITY
EFFECT ON EXISTING RIGHTS
Sec. 701. [43 U.S.C. 1701 note] (a) Nothing in this Act,
or in any amendment made by this Act, shall be
construed as terminating any valid lease, permit,
patent, right-of-way, or other land use right or
authorization existing on the date of approval of
Nothing in this Act shall be construed as terminating any other land use existing on the date of approval of this Act. Open Historic Migratory Routes When the first maps were drawn up in 1973 and 74 for the wild horse preserves they were designed for where the horses were, and that depended vastly on where the horses were spotted the day or days the surveying crews went out to look for them. Some of these included known seasonal areas that may not have been in use on that day. But very few included the migratory routes of a herd when a stallion was looking for another herd to steal a few mares and naturally select genetics for his family to remain genetically healthy. This was not a problem initially, but as those routes were permitted or leased for other uses the routes became unusable for the wild horses, blocked by obstacles such as fences or roads.
AML’s Must be Reevaluated to Meet Minimum Population for Genetics
As time has moved forward there is an increasing number of herds who have been squeezed into smaller areas, thus reducing the AML, and decreasing the variability of genetics. Without access to the migratory routes, or access to other herds they begin inbreeding. Inbreeding creates a number of anomalies that are being seen throughout herds in the west, and these anomalies are irreversible.
Anomalies of inbreeding include birth deformities, blindness, increase of stillborn and newborn mortality rates, etc. 80% of our western herds fall into the category of Under minimum genetic viability population numbers. As we stated above, the BLM will, at times, like when the herd has monetary value, augment the genetics by the introduction of a horse from an outside herd. However, the majority of our herds are simply moving toward irreversible damage that will make the herds functionally extinct.
Working on that assumption we believe that Native PZP must be implemented to control populations. However, it must be done and managed properly, which is something BLM has not been able to do at this point. Advocate groups that are managing various herds throughout the east and west are managing wild horse herds successfully with PZP, native and 22. The statistics have shown several positive effects of using birth control, for example, mares live an average of 9 years longer. The reason for that is mares not having the physical toll of giving birth every year and regaining a healthy body weight and muscular repair in between birthing years.
How the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse Management is Causing Harm and Increased Population Growth.
April 14, 2018
We have long known that removing old horses from wild herds is a bad idea. Older horses in the herd provide knowledge that the herd needs to find food in winter months or water in dry years, but this study of collective movement in ecology also shows that such removals of older animals also changes the natural behaviors, including breeding behaviors.
“In species with complex and stable groups, optimal management approaches might take into consideration social structure, hierarchies and group dynamics. In species in which older members serve as informational repositories, such as elephants, the death of older animals has long-lasting effects. When culling elephants (Loxodonta africana), typically all of the older individuals in a group are killed and the younger individuals left. However, even decades later, the remaining elephants do not respond appropriately to social cues. In wolves (Canis lupis), in spite of compensatory dynamics, which support in general a high harvest rate, groups losing the alpha members may be more likely to skip a breeding season, alter group composition or break up altogether; so there may be some ephemeral behavioural and group-level responses. Further work indicates that there may be a critical group size, below which reproduction rates are negative. Some suggest that lethal population control efforts should target solitary individuals or territorial pairs.”
Collective movement in ecology: from emerging technologies to conservation and management
Peter A. H. Westley, Andrew M. Berdahl, Colin J. Torney, Dora Biro
Published 26 March 2018.DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2017.0004
The 2013 National Academy of Sciences report on the wild horse and burro program also talked about recompensatory breeding side-effects of the disruption to the herds caused by a gather and subsequent removal of horses. And, in a report by Dr. Gus Cothran, a minimum number of horses in a herd is needed for genetic viability. When this number is not present, and the herds are repeatedly gathered, causing bands to be separated, older horses to be removed and stallions to fight to get mares and create a new band, these are all biological cues for the horse that create instinctual breeding for the survival of the species. In other words, they feel their survival, as a species is in danger, so they breed more than they would if left to behave naturally.
The statement we hear from those opposed to wild horses being managed on the land, those that feel they are overpopulated, is that the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act (WFRHBA) was created to control the population and to kill excess horses. However, the WFRHBA was created at a time when there were so few horses left in the wild that Congress passed the bill to protect the horses. This protection was to be done on preserves, to be designated where the horses currently were in 1971. These maps or preserves were done by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in 1973 and 74.
This was also the time that the first census was done and nationwide there were estimated to be 58 to 60 thousand wild horses (all statements herein include burros as well, it is common to hear horses, when the speaker or author is actually talking about horses and burros which I do throughout this article when speaking of laws, management, and population).
Going back to the NAS report we know that the methods used to estimate population are likely to result in much fewer horses that are actually out there. So we have to assume there were significantly more horses at a time when Congress had stated that it was startling that wild horses were “fast disappearing” from the American west and unanimously passed a law to protect them. Scientists and ecologists have estimated the numbers were likely to double, meaning there was likely over 100,000 wild horses on the land at that time.
Those opposed to the current wild horse population claim that at the time of the 1971 law passing in Congress there were roughly 27,000 wild horses, and use that as the target number for total population today. Why would we want to return to a number that was so low that it caused unanimous agreement that they were in danger of extinction and must be protected?
How would it cause genetic extinction when there are 27,000? The horses are kept in small areas of the original land given to them via the 1971 law, in fact, the last statistics stated that they are only managed on 17% or the land that was once theirs following the implementation of the law. The following graphic will help explain.
The management using multiple-use formula was something mandated by the Federal Land Policy Management Act (FLPMA) which came after the 1971 law that mandated the wild horse preserves created were to be managed ‘principally’ for wild horses. When FLPMA stated public lands must be managed for multiple use, that was implemented. However, the part of FLPMA ignored was the qualification that FLPMA did not override any existing federal land use laws.
There are court rulings that state the 71 law is a federal land use law, so FLPMA could not legally change the principal use of the preserves. The horses should be managed on the entire acreage allocated for them, and those HA’s or herd areas should be managed principally for horses. (*Note – throughout this author say horses, but this applies to horses & burros)
Why is the current administration, and the DOI, USDA willing to lie about wild horse numbers and effects on the lands when clearly the greater cost both monetarily and in wildlife loss, and land value loss comes from commercial livestock on the public lands?
October 2004: for the first time in the history of the agency, the Bureau of Land Management collected more revenue in recreational fees than annual grazing fees. This despite the fact that recreational fees are often collected through voluntary pay stations, while grazing fees are mandatory and enforced, and BLM does not charge fees for many recreational offerings on BLM lands.
In Nevada (the state with more federal land than any other outside of Alaska), federal public lands grazing provides 1,228 jobs. By comparison, one casino in Las Vegas employs 37,000 people.
Alternative uses of federal public lands contribute much more income to local and regional economies than livestock grazing. In the Central Winter Ecosystem Management Area in the Kaibab Plateau, Arizona, dispersed recreation is worth $200,000 annually to the local and regional economies; fuelwood is worth $48,984; livestock grazing is worth $45,988, and deer and turkey hunting is worth $1,324,259.
As part of his research on public lands grazing economics, Dr. Thomas Powers produced two tables of data that are widely cited to refute the contention that public lands grazing is essential to western state economies.
In summary, we disagree with the target population of approximately 27,000 horses left on the range as stated by BLM, DOI, and others.
We assert that it will bring about a genetic extinction of the wild horses.
We assert that 41% of the land was removed from the program without consultation.
We assert that the remaining 59% has been illegally divided and horses are not the principal use of that 49%.
We recommend that the 41% be repatriated, that the land is managed principally for horses, and that horses currently in holding are released back out onto these lands.