NBC Series on Wasteful Spending with corrected, working link

NBC NEWS TO AIR STORY ON FEINGOLD EFFORT TO CUT WASTEFUL SPENDING … suggest a Mustang segment for the future too! Click here to contact NBC (this will lead you to a webform, choose “nightly news” and you can send your comments from there — the nightly news webform is not working)

(From Senator Feingold’s media alert): Tonight, NBC Nightly News is scheduled to air a story as part of its ongoing “The Fleecing of America” series, which highlights examples of wasteful government spending.  Tonight’s segment is scheduled to focus on a giveaway to the mining industry that allows it to drill on public lands without paying a royalty for the minerals it extracts. The piece will include an interview with Senator Feingold, who is the author of legislation to end this government giveaway and save hundreds of millions in taxpayer dollars.  The legislation is part of Feingold’s “Control Spending Now Act,” legislation that includes dozens of specific spending cuts to help reduce the deficit by about one half trillion dollars.

An extended NBC interview with Senator Feingold about this example of wasteful spending will be available after tonight’s broadcast here. For more information on Feingold’s Control Spending Now Act, visit here.


47 Responses to “NBC Series on Wasteful Spending with corrected, working link”

  1. Janet Ferguson Says:

    Thank you for posting this — this story really told it like it is. . . that the mining industry is getting a “sweetheart deal” from Washington, D.C., operating a law that goes back to the 1870’s where mining companies don’t have to pay any royalties. A prof. at Univ. of Nevada was interviewed who stated that there have been numerous attempts to change the law, without sucess. The mining companies claim that “jobs will be lost” if they have to pay royalties, and so the elected officials go running with their tails between their legs. Senator Reid was shown on some of the footage. . .

  2. shari welsh Says:

    The full cost is likely to lie in the range of one half to one billion dollars each year.

    ” To make matters worse, a recent economic study indicates the federal livestock (CATTLE, SHEEP) grazing program runs at a loss of a minimum of $128 million each year after subtracting fee receipts. The full cost is likely to lie in the range of one half to one billion dollars each year.
    From its inception in 1971, the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) and the U.S. Forest Service’s (FS) Wild Horse and Burro Program has failed to protect horses and burros in their charge. Instead, the BLM has operated in a manner that promotes the interests of livestock grazing operations over those of wild horses and burros. Wild horses and burros have been managed based on political considerations rather than on sound scientific management policies. As a result, wild horse and burro populations and their herd areas have dramatically declined in number and size to the point that many herds are no longer self-sustaining and genetically viable. At the same time, livestock, which vastly outnumber horses and burros, remain on the public lands causing serious environmental degradation. To make matters worse, a recent economic study indicates the federal livestock grazing program runs at a loss of a minimum of $128 million each year after subtracting fee receipts. The full cost is likely to lie in the range of one half to one billion dollars each year.The Burns amendment coupled with BLM’s mismanagement of the wild horse and burro program jeopardizes the future of these “living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirithttp://www.awionline.org/ht/d/sp/i/11223/pid/11223

  3. Barbara Warner Says:

    The big gold mine they showed was in Elko, NV where most of the wild horses are being removed from. They also said Senator Reid was for only giving a small amount of the revenue to the public. No surprise .

  4. Barb S Says:

    Great investigative report by NBC. Certainly got people’s attention when it was stated that the gold mines were on Public Lands owned by all of us. My daughter in law just came in the door after seeing this and said “why is this country in debt; what’s wrong with this picture”. I bet a lot of people don’t even know about our Public Lands and this was a real eye-opener! And the threat of losing jobs was all the mining company could offer if they had to pay royalties. Like they are going to take “their” mine someplace else–what a crock!

    • Linda Says:

      This story focused on gold mining. There are many more mines and untapped mineral deposits out there, especially in the Great Basin/Great Desert Basin. Nevada is the biggest player.

      To my knowledge, nobody has reported on Lithium yet. Maybe I should contact big media and ask them to investigate.

      The median income in Nevada is $50,000. The 185% figure quoted by the Commissioner equals $92,000. Wonder if all those laid off auto workers have considered a switch to mining?

    • Marilyn Wargo Says:

      These are issues that have been there all along. Our resources are being taken in ways that have never been beneficial to the masses. These really are tree hugger issues. From the loss of old growth forests and trees that are clearcut and need replanting, our waters being polluted by mines, agriculture, cattle and chemicals from many sources, the minerals and coal, natural gas and coal bed methane. All these leave scars on the land and pollution behind. Nothing is happening as we were told it would; use the leases presently on the books before more are sold. I guess we lose again. Big time. Just why lose the horses? Remove the BS and there is a recovery job to do. Hold onto what is left. Remove BLM. mar

  5. jan Says:

    where do we post on nbc for the horses

  6. jan Says:

    they mention the oil companies have to pay royalities – i thot the oil companies got a nice big writeoff for looking for oil and they hardly pay any taxes

    • Linda Says:

      We receive royalties on several O&G properties, but they’re a pittance compared to profits. Corporations whine they have to pay big bucks for exploration. They also pay stockholders, and many corporate employees (especially the bigwigs) receive stock options as part of their bonus packages.

  7. Margaret Says:

    I haven’t seen this clip yet but I’d like to throw something out into the mix. I was a VERY SERIOUS car accident 13 miles east of Battle Mountain NV. Battle Mountain is about 65 miles west of Elko. The incredible kind folk who came and rescued me happened to work for the volunteer fire and rescue dept (respectively). They worked 5 days a week at the mines and since there was nothing to do on their days off they worked as emt’s etc. In fact, it happened to be an off duty cop who was working rescue that day to get me out of the car. Even with a concussion I remember these facts as clear as a sunny Bay Area day! I met the kindest folk you could ever ask to meet under some very stressful conditions. If you ever have to be in an accident I hope you meet the kind of folk I met that day.

    But these are the people who aren’t in positions to make government decisions. Battle Mountain is a small town that if you blink too long you’ll miss the offramps.

    But now I need to go watch this video. I just wanted to mention some of the folk who live in the area that we are talking about. About their kindness to a stranger and about the care they gave me when I needed their help so desperately. You may not agree with me but some of those folks are my heroes–I wouldn’t be alive today without them.

    • Linda Says:

      Bless those who saved you! There are good and caring people all over our country. They go out of their way to show kindness to strangers with no expectation of recognition or reward.

      It’s our government, not the majority of our people, that is out out of touch, common sense, and compassion. No “Golden Rule” for them!

  8. Margaret Says:

    Okay I just went and watch a three part video. Let me tell you what I know for what its worth.

    Several years ago there was a horrible mining accident in West Virginia. I think his name is Randy Mcclough (I don’t know the spelling but’s pronounced like McCloy I think). It was that horrible situation in which communications got all mixed up and families were misinformed that everyone had survived when they hadn’t. The mining officials knew this but chose not to correct this until after Randy was out.

    This man suffered horrible brain damage. He was in Carbon Monoxide poisoning for 41 hours. My sister who works in the medical profession told me that he would get better for about a year and then gradually all improvements would decline. The brain is marvelous for regaining its health given the chance but it takes alot of time and energy and work. There isn’t a magical pill to take away what happened to this man.

    So I disagree with Mining Safety. Maybe NV has gotten lucky. Maybe they do things differently but Utah has suffered their fair share of really awful mining accidents.

    Historically miners go on strike because of unsafe working conditions.

    NV has casinos. They have ranching. There are jobs in Elko. Maybe not as high paying, maybe its harder work physically. But there are jobs. Not everyone that travels the highways of NV stop at hotels to go play the one armed bandits, I know cause I don’t. You stop because your tired and its time to sleep.

    Change comes slowly. But this isn’t the 1870’s or even the 1900’s anymore. Maybe its time to figure out a safer way to do the mining, both for manpower and for any animals in the area. And like the ranchers the mining co. should have to pay some kind of lease on the land and whatever minerals they take.

    So correct me if I’m seeing this wrong but I see it as the miners can rape the land and not pay a dime for the damages they cause. Don’t they call this strip mining?

    • Barb S Says:

      Margaret–you are right about the exploitation of the working miners by the companies. My husband’s relatives were coal miners when you went in the mine where you couldn’t stand and worked that way all day. By the way, there were ponies who pulled the coal wagons in those mines(Maryland and West Virginia) and they stayed in there all day too. Now they just blow off the mountain tops for the coal but the mining companies have always exploited the workers. And the mining on the Public Lands exploits the US taxpayer by allowing the companies to take ALL the profits. Looks like ole Harry Reid is in bed with lots of varied interests in Nevada. All this and legalized prostitution too!



  10. Barb S Says:

    I tried to contact NBC but their link does not work. Wonder if they “disabled” it?

    • Linda Says:

      I only was able to view the broadcast clip and the rebuttal clip from the “Commissioner”. Where do I go for the full interview?

  11. sandra longley Says:

    Freedom may have been spotted at dark next to the dirt road out by granite range..alone..has apparently not been able to find any mares out there yet..He is our census taker..If there are any mares left out there-he will find them…further on down the line tracks were found of a mare and a newborn foal…apparently looking for water..he will find her eventually

    • Nora Morbeck Says:

      The comment about Freedom brings something to mind… I’ve read negative comments about wild horses on other sites, just so I know what the other side is up to. 🙂 It’s interesting to me that so many people think our country’s wild herds are made up of feral horses, turned loose on the range by irresponsible owners.
      I don’t think my horses could last a month out there in the wild. They’d be lame within a week, geldings would never be accepted in a herd with a stallion, nor would they likely survive in a bachelor herd. Mares might make it … if they could find other horses and if they could adapt easily to eating range forage. I’d say the probability is low, though.
      And just look at Freedom, searching for mares. He’s a range-savvy stallion with inherent knowledge of the territory, and he can’t seem to find a herd.
      To provide a comeback for these people who think they’re just domestic-turned-loose horses, are there statistics regarding these kinds of horses on the range? Anything to combat the ignorance?

      • Marilyn Wargo Says:

        Maybe not, but many here and elsewhere have noted that these individuals do not do well. If a young mare makes it she would be the exception and how many others would be accepted let alone taken in by savvy wild ones? I know that odd combinations may happen but this is all the exception. Domestic horses are rarely let loose to begin with. They would have a next to impossible task to learn where food and water was year round. They are sold at auction to kill buyers. A few get saved and find good homes. But the idea of someone not wanting the little money from an auction sale but being even dumber and releasing a domestic horse would be rare also. I think if this happens, these horses head for the nearest ranch where they either get taken in or off to auction. Domestic horses are not mixed into the Calico herd. Those are wild horses. If any were there their brands would be identified. There just are not successfully dumped domestic horses. mar

  12. Lisa LeBlanc Says:

    Two GAO investigations into the BLM ran concurrently with the investigation into the WH&B program – 2008. One was Land Acquisitions, the other Environmental Inspection of Mining Operations.
    I read somewhere during that research that if the royalties were collected, it could not only solve our current economic crisis but leave us with a BUDGET SURPLUS.
    One in every 50 acres of Nevada Public land falls under a mining operation, patent or claim.
    A total of less than 93,000 people benefit from the vast amounts of profits coming out of the mining operations on Public Lands. More than half of the companies aren’t even based in America. (Canada, Australia and England). The company that runs the operation in Elko also runs cattle on Public lands to ‘take the heat’ should the Public screech a little.
    Holding the fates of the people of Elko is blackmail. And blackmail is against the law, ain’t it?

    • sandra longley Says:

      from the reading I have done and the videos I have watched..I would have to say Nevada takes the cake on blackmail and corrution..I listened online to the Washoe counties commission meeting on the ruby pipeline…Counties are going to get millions off of the tax revenues from the pipeline..every year..Who do you think wins on that? Do you think they will set aside any money to improve habitat for wildlife? The only species that was addressed were the sage grouse. I changed my mind about trying to lease land down there..looking on the other side of the calicos in calif.

      If it is bad now think of all those BLM leases(125) being fasttracked for energy projects..there will be alot of greasy palms

  13. Barb S Says:

    Here is the Shoshone lawsuit to stop expansion of the Barrick Gold Mine at Elko. Lawsuit was originally aqainst BLM and now also Barrick.





  16. jan Says:

    i emailed them about the blm and the mustangs and they wrote me thanking me so if more people would write about the blm they might do a program on the horses

  17. jan Says:

    well, look who we have from nevada – good ole ken salazar and good ole harry reid –

  18. jan Says:

    whoops is that error – guess salazar is from colorado – set me right folks – but dont they border each other – srry

    • sandra longley Says:

      You were close, Bob Abbey is from Nevada and spent his career in Nevada politics..Need I say more????

  19. jan Says:

    well i found a real long article online – back from jan of 1996 and published in the atlantic monthly – sent it to jon marvel at the watershed project – the web link is http://www.theatlantic.com/post/docs/issues/96jan/rancher/rancher.htm

    or google – the atlantic monthly – The Rancher Subsidy by Todd Oppenheimer

    basically its about ranches in oregon and how one rancher is working to protect the land – goes into detail on what cattle do to the land – very good artilce

  20. jan Says:

    well after watching some of the health care debate today on c-span i would say that this administration – is not above doing whatever it takes to get what they want – i realize the blm has been persecuting the horses longer than present administration has been in power but i think a lot of the so-called leaders in govt – heads of depts and stuff – do believe they are above the law and can do as they please – that they have been picked or chosen by either us the voters or once the head hancho is in office, he picks them, and no one stops them from their personal agendas

  21. jan Says:

    were u able to get to nbc website – i googled evening news with brian williams and found the one on the mine and then there was a place on the website to write in your comments on fleecing america – wasnt very big space for comments so could not say much about how blm is wasting money but tried to put how blm is rounding up horses off public lands and holding them – probably someone frm cloud could do much better

    as far as nevada income goes – thot they were state that did not have sales tax or income tax – but they are down in income in gambling because of recession and several hotels have laid people off – thot largest silver mine was in nevada

  22. jan Says:

    i think in reading various postings about goings on in this country – the poor horses are just one of the symptoms that our govt has been out of control for many years – someone on news said over 30 years – that washington does as they please and to h___ with the rest of the country – and the animals and people who live here – as far as the horses go, look what happened in 2004 and none of us knew and now its out of control – they have been doing it so long its just part of the way things are done in washington – too bad we didnt know then – maybe we could have stopped it sooner – anyway i sure hope freedom finds that little mare – he must be so lonely out there by himself

    • sandra longley Says:

      You can bet he will be sniffing every pile of poop out there until he does…studs are -relentless-as he proved by his escape..What worries me is that he has been unable to find any other horses in this time..I am really thinking, the balance of horses is over on the California side, as the BLM seems to think, or we just have a few stragglers left of that whole herd and we probably need to find out before that case goes before the judge and show up with some evidence…You know the BLM said they did a fly over right after the roundup and stated there were 600 horses left, and now they say they will fly and do a head count in a couple of months…after the court case..

      • Marilyn Wargo Says:

        The intention is to have a count up there and it would be done before the court makes a decision. mar

      • sandra longley Says:

        I certainly hope that is the case Mar. It is the first I have heard of it, and could make a critical point in the court date on the 30 of april-to get horses released back into Calico..and used in future legal cases to validate claims that BLM figures are way off. Right now, I can’t see the Spriggs case as winable, the way it is stated..They would need time to file an amended complaint, so that this could be introduced into evidence.

      • Marilyn Wargo Says:

        There are NV. Advocates who want to do a count up there. It would not take long. It is likely to be done both by spotter plane and people on the ground and would not take but days to complete. This was not part of the census but specifically for the Calico horses..

        There is a non profit Plane service I think it is called Wings for Wildlife and I hope they fly in NV. mar

      • Linda Says:

        An independent census is the only way to go. As we all know, BLM counts are purposely inflated and therefore useless.

        Do they use still shots or videos for ID and keep records on individuals, as people do with whales? That would require lots of up-front teamwork, but once the data-based was established, updating should be easier. And then every wild one could be named as well as numbered for cross reference.

        Wasn’t there a comment from somebody at the BLM saying they couldn’t guarantee an accurate census because they didn’t know if they were counting the same horses more than once?

      • Marilyn Wargo Says:

        BLM and horse numbers have been so off handed and poorly done for years you have to suspect that was always the point. Then they can over estimate and make a clean sweep. They will continue to do this. We need the right numbers. I will ask people I know what is the plan… mar

      • sandra longley Says:

        mar, let us know if there is something we can do to expedite this…also the methodology for BLM counts involves a 2 fold count..double counting by 2 different individuals in the helicopter/plane and identifying by markings at least 1 individual in a band..do they actual follow these protocols..given the history it is hard to have confidence..I would imagine given the recent gather the calico horses would be very spooked of airplane sounds. Also the acreage involved is immense and hard to cover by foot. We must do an unbiased and accurate accounting fully verified and objective…copies of flight co-ordinates to verify the location of the horses.

      • Marilyn Wargo Says:

        Well, I am in Colorado, this needs to be done ASAP. I will contact Willis and Craig and see what they have in mind. Planes can fly fairly close and get video and pics as well as not be as spooky as helicopters. They cost less to fly, also. A spotter plane would just give people on the ground directions for accessing a larger group or set of bands that could be observed better on foot or ATV. But it is all difficult. We need to do it so we know how and then keep at it. This area and CA and Wyoming will be tough but the info is necessary. It has to be done. mar

  23. jan Says:

    i read one article about calico – not sure if on cloud or another website that some 600 horses were left in the wild – do you think that is possible – seems some would run the other way or hide – i remember in one of the cloud videos ginger mentions one of the older crafty stallions hid with his mares under the trees – the helicopter had missed them

    • sandra longley Says:

      Except that most of those 600 horses are missing in action..Is it possible they all fled to the California side..possible but not likely..They better start their count on the Calif side. A month and 1/2 is not much time to get that count done..It needs to be done by helicopter, with videos..I am telling you, freedom would find mares quicker than any human being could..the fact that he has been out there a month and 1/2 without finding any is a very bad sign



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