Friday, April 7


You can almost set your watch by it: After much hullabaloo, back when the national news media was focused on this, as to how it was going to get right to the bottom of the Alabama Mad Cow and its origins, the USDA has come up with next to nothing, and hardly anyone is reporting this discrepancy. Capital Press Agriculture Weekly, though, notes that as of last week, the cow's origins "remain a mystery."

The article notes that "USDA promised daily Internet updates on the investigation, posted at, then didn’t give any new information for the next three days." And after those three days, there's been squat - go check for yourself.

In a continuation of the tradition of USDA follies, the article goes on to note that the agency's initial announcement got the breed of the cow wrong, and that upon digging up the body, had "estimated" the cow's age at 10 years. But there's some contention about that estimate, since it conveniently dates the animal's birth before the 1998 feed ban. South Korea, for one, isn't blithely accepting this "estimate" and says the U.S. has failed to prove its claim that a cow found infected with BSE there last month is 10 years old. The country will continue to ban US beef until the USDA produces more compelling evidence of this claim. I'm sure they'll step up and delivers that evidence immediately - assuming, that is, that the dog didn't eat it.

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