This party just keeps going and going, but all good things must come to an end.
Today we bring you the final installment of our four-day Birthday flashback series. (Here are parts 1, 2, and 3.) It’s been a wild ride this year, but we hope we’ve been able to persuade many of you to think about where your “humane” donations are going.
Here’s hoping this year will be better than the last for struggling U.S. pet shelters. They deserve your respect, your help, and (if you are able) your money.
- We published an “Understanding HSUS” pamphlet. HSUS had a hand in several elections. (It won some, lost some.) And Ohio’s new Ag chief was bad news for HSUS.
- We gave Nebraskans something to talk about and set the tone with questions for an HSUS “Town Hall.” (Alas, the questions were heavily vetted…) Despite HSUS’s best spin, Nebraskans showed they won’t kowtow.
- HSUS’s regrettably recycled its tired “cage-free” shtick. And HSUS’s “we’re not anti-meat” spin didn’t fool us, and it doesn’t fool one long-time legislative observer.
- HSUS set up a “wildlife solutions” business, and we asked HumaneWatchers to show their thanksgiving for pet shelters.
- Shelter Supply Saturday! (HumaneWatchers didn’t disappoint, but HSUS wasn’t so charitable.
- We interviewed a perceptive future veterinarian. He, like more and more Americans, “gets” it.
- HSUS got a “D” (again). By one estimate, half of HSUS’s costs go to fundraising and overhead.
- One lawsuit against HSUS ended, but two more remain. HSUS’s CEO once ran for office on the Green Party ticket. And HSUS’s national agenda floundered.
- We de-tangled HSUS’s biggest chicken talking point.
- Wayne Pacelle said convicted dogfighting kingpin Michael Vick “would do a good job as pet owner.” It was easily the quote of the year. Predictably, spin followed, but we told football fans all about it. Outrage ensued.
- HSUS fundraisers forgot to check a horse’s pulse. HSUS sued a money management firm for fraud. And HSUS’s top “educator” called it quits.
- HSUS and its vegan allies petitioned the USDA. We FOIAed the agency to see what HSUS was up to.
- We saw mainstream condemnation of HSUS, and possible buyer’s remorse from Ohio’s new Governor. An Illinois legislator asked his constituents to call the feds.
- The Document Library kept growing. We reviewed a fascinating book on animal-rights history, and shared an old HSUS leaflet arguing that animals should be allowed to sue people.
- HSUS showed it’s no stranger to online censorship. Mike Rowe sent an on-air message to “Wayne P,” who is now a registered lobbyist.
- HSUS announced a ballot initiative to criminalize the sale of ordinary eggs in the state of Washington. And we cracked open HSUS’s price-fixing claims, learning that eggs will never be “humane enough” for some.
- Sometimes when HSUS “wins,” animals lose.
- Spay Day has become a fundraiser, and HSUS’s top shelter expert whiffed on the $64-million question.
- We unveiled five billboards in Times Square!
- We released a massive collection of insider documents showing HSUS’s internal strife during the late ’80s.
- We parsed HSUS’s “membership” dictionary, and showed how HSUS lumps mailing-list “prospects” into its inflated “constituency.”
- HSUS flip-flopped on animal-abuser registries, while HSUS BFF Michael Vick got a civic award from the city of Dallas. (Yes. Seriously.)
- HSUS’s shelter giving crept upward to four-fifths of one percent of its budget for 2009 And HSUS’s international arm got a multimillion-dollar bailout.
- HSUS kept sheltering its cash while millions of shelter pets perished. An airline magazine reminded us how HSUS continues its masquerade. And a media-savvy veterinarian summed up our core message on his video blog.
Whew! That was a mouthful.
It’s time to start Year Two. Thanks so much for reading and participating. When you want to help animals, please give local. And tell a friend about HumaneWatch!