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Message Title: A hidden TSE Agenda
Author: antler333  Posted: 10\30\2003 09:51
Location: CO
I am going to open up a second venue of query as to peoples impressions of recent FED actions regarding CWD. here is:

Chard Forrest

A huge contradiction is present in the federal reactions regarding TSE disease. Ovines (Sheep) have scrapie, cervids (deer) have CWD. Both diseases are virtually identical in brain symptoms when examined under a microscope, both are little understood by the research community....yet the rules instituted by the FEDs for TSE's are considerably different for each set of species. CWD, the deer disease, is clobbered with rules and regs and actions, yet scrapie, the sheep disease, is virtually ignored. And while USDA personnel will vehemently argue that they are equally attacking scapie, the agency's actions belie the words. NO restrictions are in place for domestic scapie cases (other than imported animals) and you can run scrapie exposed sheep thru a USDA slaughter plant all day without any concern, testing or tracking of critters. Not so for deer...everything must be perfectly identified, examined and fully tested prior to entering the food chain. WHAT IS GOIN' ON?

Now part of the difference can be explained by the fact that mutton (meat from older sheep) is NOT a common human food at the supermarket, but lamb (a young sheep)is. Importantly, lamb is soley young animals and scrapie like CWD or BSE is perceived only to attack older animals generally several years old..... since that is the only time you can detect it by finding the requisit abnormal prion proteins. BUT if you think about it, obviously the disease MUST be present prior to one's ability to detect it...something caused those detectable prions to form

Additionally, farmed cervids are the domestic versions of cervids found in the wild...and concerns by wildlife agencies have obviously affected the FEDS and media people's judgments, correctly or not. If domestics have the disease they can pass it to wild and visa versa, and of course, cross country transport is their greatest fear. As such, wildlife agency applied pressure is most certainly considerable, irregardless of the facts.

BUT, lets us look at the bigger picture:

1) the USDA will not certify private labs to do TSE testing, they FORBID IT! WHY?

2) THE USDA HAS SPENT MILLIONS to set up a national network of specialized TSE labs at universities or other govt facilities to do ALL TSE testing. All under USDA funding and direction using ONLY their testing protocol and approved personnel. WHY?

3) The newly constructed testing facility capacities are much greater than the requirements for the fairly limited cervid CWD problem, albeit, much more regional wild survaillance testing needs to be done. The good news is that all the testing will now be free or subsidized by the FEDS...but they get the information first! WHY?

4)When an animal tests positive....just try to get ANY information about it.. virtually impossible, even if you were the owner. WHY?

5)The USDA has provided millions in indemnity and research money and gobs of directives and guidelines, all for a relatively obscure, but seemingly scarey wildlife BRAIN disease. A disease which mostly affects wild species which are NOT generally regarded as under their normal agricultural control.. since in the majority of cases are wild animals. WHY?

6) The media has hyped this whole story OUT OF SIGHT compared to reality. A few thousand wild animals and a few hundred domestic cervids have gotten CWD and died over 30 years. NO HUMAN has died of CWD nor Scrapie. NOT EVEN AN INDICATION OF A PROBLEM. IN the bigger picture, ONLY about 130 people WORLDWIDE have died of new variant CJD in over a decade, despite 10's of millions of people supposedly eating 100' of million of pounds of beef, which included an estimated 50,000 to 100,000 positive BSE cows. New variant has not even been definitively linked to the BSE cows, but the evidence is relatively strong. (BUT a vegetarian did die of nvCJD.) WHY all the hubbub?

Hmmmm! interesting questions, huh!............

NOW, Before I repond to my own retorical inquiries:

Put your thinking cap on peoples and see if you can find the common factor here. WHY would the USDA go to all this trouble and expense to beat deer farmers over the head?

Let the juices flow and post your thoughts.....