Mark Klaus on Smithfield Abuse

Pathetic and deeply dishonest piece by Mark Klaus in Feedstuffs regarding this month’s HSUS investigation of Smithfield. Klaus makes a blanket denial that there was anything systematically wrong with the facility’s practices:

Except for the unsuccessful dispatching of an injured sow and a few aborted piglets, in my opinion, the video showed little else in the way of "proof" of animal mistreatment.

That “unsuccessful dispatching” of the injured sow involved her being shot repeatedly, but not fatally, in the head with a captive bolt pistol, then tossed into a dumpster where she suffered the entire day while lying partially buried by dead sows.

I choose to call it like I see it. The beginning of the video was plainly sped up, with the narration describing the sows as "going crazy."

I choose to call it like I see it: Klaus is an idiot. The guy is making a huge claim without offering a shred of evidence. HSUS in fact offers an extended version of the video, featuring lengthy shots that debunk any claims that the images presented by HSUS were the result of manipulated video or dishonest editing.

The sows were obviously agitated; it doesn’t require anyone with animal behavior "expertise" to say that with some degree of confidence. In my mind, they were agitated because the "employee" who was most likely assigned to give them their scheduled feeding was too busy making sure the camera was in focus.

Yeah, that must be it.

Mark Klaus is not a journalist. It takes a special kind of hack to deny outrageous cruelties plainly caught on video. This is a case of an agribusiness partisan becoming so desensitized that he’s lost the ability to believe the public will object to extreme confinement operations. Link.