Wisconsion is the first and only state to implement mandatory Premise ID , the first step of the USDA's proposed National Animal Identification System ( NAIS ). From what I hear it is a mixed bag. On the one hand Dr. Wiemers of the USDA commended Wisconsin for having registered 400% of their horses already. On the other hand I have received personal communications from a number of Wisconsonites who say they have not registered and don't plan on doing so. Below is a letter from one such Wisconsin livestock owner:

Walter, Premise ID and NAIS have already been passed in Wisconsin, as you probably know. I have seen a lot of farm programs in my 66 years, but this is the most ridiculous one ever presented. I don't see more ag. disease now than there was 50 years ago. I am not certain it is designed to hurt the small farmers, though it will I see it more as a result of globalization. For [Michael] Johanns , [USDA Secretary of Agriculture] to cease testing cattle for BSE, and commensurately implement a device for tracking this disease, is incongruous. In addition, cattle are still ingesting blood and slaughterhouse waste, in their feed... how stupid is this?

I will not comply as long as I do not receive WRITTEN notice from Madison. And even then I will go down kicking, claiming this is NOT constitutional. The farmer who rents my land has not registered his premises either, and he raises beef. I do not know anyone who has registered, but then I only know 3 farmers, because the encroaching development has taken over all the farmland in my area. The farmer closest to me raises both organically fed beef and bison...he does not object to NAIS. I suspect he is registered due to selling bison meat to restaurants. I don't know how the third one feels.... I have not seen him for so long.

The members of Wisconsin Against NAIS are still fighting this legislation, with a vengeance. Some talk about Big Brother , some feel the next step is tracking US citizens, some believe the factory farmers want the "little guy" out of business, some have major concerns NAIS is an invasion of privacy, others find it frightening, others worry about the cost. They have discussed organizing a protest at Madison, our capitol. I have written to my congressman and both US senators. All three are pro-NAIS. (sigh) I don't think our state senators will revoke their decision to pass NAIS. They seem to feel WI is a leading example..... Hah! This state is usually the last on the list for accepting any new innovation.

What really bothers me most about NAIS is the confiscation of our animals either because we do not comply or to depopulate . The first is akin to the German SS and the latter is unnecessary slaughter. Sound like scare tactics to me..... I give our veterinarians' ability to control disease more credit than that.

Microchips are re-programable and are subject to viruses (as in a computer), rendering them worthless for tracking. Also, they have been known to migrate.

I have no trust in the USDA or the BLM. Both have been known to lie and manipulate. I have been working to stop horse slaughter in the US. Through this effort, I have learned how devious both organizations are. (that's another chapter)

I really appreciate reading your updates on NAIS. You have produced a fantastic web page.... even the people working to stop horse slaughter, plus other animal interest groups, are familiar with NoNAIS.org. Everyone either recommends or quotes your web site [ http://NoNAIS.org  ].

Kudos for the good fight, Walter.... :-) M. Dickson in Wisconsin
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