Thursday, March 16, 2006

Third Mad Cow Hits U.S.


Alabama

An examination of the Alabama cow identified as the third U.S. case of mad cow disease showed the animal was at least 10 years old, meaning it was born before the 1997 feed ban was implemented, U.S. officials said on Thursday. The U.S. Agriculture Department also said federal officials located a six-week-old calf that belonged to the infected animal. The calf has been quarantined and moved to USDA's lab in Ames, Iowa, for further observation. The animal was exhumed and its teeth examined to confirm that it was at least 10 years old.
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First mad cow.(December, 2003)The sick animal came from a farm in Mabton, Washington. It was a Canadian import. (Blame the Canadians!) Japan banned imports of U.S. beef.
Second mad cow in U.S. June, 2005)
The Agriculture Department conducted DNA testing to find the cow's herd.
The United States confirmed what may be its first homegrown case of mad cow disease on Friday, seven months after officials first suspected the animal might be infected. Taiwan banned U.S. beef.
The U.S. wouldn't say where the cow came from but it was later discovered to have been a TEXAS cow. Don't mess with Texas. They were more concerned with cattle prices.
Third cow and its calf, Alabama. (March, 2006)

Bush's Mad Cow Safeguards Not Enough. Well of course they're not, we don't have a decent tracking system.At least Bush knows what cows are, he's not scared of them the way he's terrified of horses. Or is that equine? Bush does not like chitchat when he jogs. Spotting a herd of cattle, he says simply, "bovine". Minutes pass before he says another word. Typical. Uncurious George learned a new word as he spends so much time at his fake ranch. (The cows belong to a neighboring rancher...a real rancher.) U.S. Plans to scale back testing.Sheer insanity or further Bush misadministration Katrina-esque incompetence?
What Mad Cow Means
WASHINGTON, DC, United States (UPI) -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture was quick to assure the public earlier this week that the third case of mad cow disease did not pose a risk to them, but what federal officials have not acknowledged is that this latest case indicates the deadly disease has been circulating in U.S. herds for at least a decade.
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'The fact the Texas cow showed up fairly clearly implied the existence of other undetected cases,' Dr. Paul Brown, former medical director of the National Institutes of Health`s Laboratory for Central Nervous System Studies and an expert on mad cow-like diseases, told United Press International. 'The question was, `How many?` and we still can`t answer that.'
Brown, who is preparing a scientific paper based on the latest two mad cow cases to estimate the maximum number of infected cows that occurred in the United States, said he has 'absolutely no confidence in USDA tests before one year ago' because of the agency`s reluctance to retest the Texas cow that initially tested positive.
USDA officials finally retested the cow and confirmed it was infected seven months later, but only at the insistence of the agency`s inspector general.
'Everything they did on the Texas cow makes everything they did before 2005 suspect,' Brown said. Despite this, Brown said the U.S. prevalence of mad cow, formally known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE, did not significantly threaten human or cattle health.
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This is the way our esteemed Republicans handle a potentially life-threatening disease...threaten people who won't buy our beef, Japanese Sanctions Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., said Wednesday during a conference call with the Kansas media. “The Japanese need to open the market — it’s been closed too long.” If not, Brownback said, America might impose an “economic cost” on Japan.
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Nice, Brownback! We must protect the stock market and stockyard profits over Americans, and cows. Maybe his beef with Japan will keep him too busy to shove abortion bans and "Intelligent Design" down our throats...just tainted meat. Who's mad now?

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