Weekly Posting of the Conservative Cow Doctor


Step One: Stop the Bleeding

It was the fourth morning on the trail and it was a rest day for guests, crew, cows and horses. Breakfast was served around 7:00 instead of 3:00, and after eating we took guests on scenic ride to Leaky Mountain. We were riding single file through the steep, downfall timber at Robinson Crossing when Marshall, one of the best cow ponies in the string, stepped on a down tree limb, snapped it and drove the jagged point deep into his groin. As he lunged forward, the branch pulled free and a torrent of blood sprayed across the trail. It was a shocking sight to those unaccustomed to shocking sights. I swung off, dropped to my knees and examined the injury by thrusting my hand into the puncture to the depth of my forearm. The pressure of the blood spurting from a lacerated vessel told me this artery was big enough to have a name and Marshall’s tenure in the Double Rafter string could be over in minutes.

I stole a long-sleeve tee shirt from a nearby saddle and packed it into the wound as tight as I possibly could before sending Meagan, my oldest daughter, galloping back to camp for the major medical kit. With one knee on the ground and the other supporting my elbow, I pushed the wound pack into Marshall’s groin with all my strength. Nate, an M.D. and a guest cowboy from Tennessee, swung off his horse to help. Dr. Nate was a big man, probably 6 foot 5 and nearly 300 pounds and when he knelt down and pushed up he nearly lifted Marshall off the ground. Nate and I tag teamed the direct pressure until Meagan galloped back with the medical kit. Her horse was lathered from fetlock to forelock—so much for his rest day.

I had dealt with an eerily similar wound years earlier and found it impossible to ligate a massive bleeder so deep in the thigh. My previous experience was in a surgery room with a patient under gas anesthesia and here I was 12 miles from the nearest road and balanced on a steep canyon wall. To knock Marshall down, roll him onto his back and tie off an artery would make great reality TV, but it would be unsuccessful and he would certainly die during the commercial break. Leaving the pack in place, I sutured the skin over the wadded tee shirt as tightly as I could. Marshall never flinched. I administered a dose of anti-inflammatories and antibiotics and we left Marshall tied to a tree. We would be riding out of the canyon in the morning and if Marshall survived the night he could pony behind the pack string as we made our way back to the ranch.

Marshall was a favorite of my twelve-year-old nephew, Trent, and after dinner he saddled up to go check on his old friend. He tucked a bucket under his arm so as to give Marshall a drink, and with a tear in his eye, Trent rode off into the dwindling daylight. This story has a happy ending as Marshall lived through the night, walked the 12 miles out of the Little Horn Canyon and fully recovered. The moral to my story is this: The first step in a crisis is to stop the bleeding and this brings me to my point.

Our republic is hemorrhaging cash. Like a lacerated branch of the femoral artery, money is spraying everywhere. Within the last month, America crossed two historic financial thresholds: First, our national debt rocketed through 18 trillion dollars on its journey to infinity and beyond. Second, new calculations reveal Social Security will be bankrupt by 2024; 40 years earlier than previous projections. So what did the ruling class in Congress do? They symbolically cut another artery by passing a 1.1 trillion dollar budget thereby fully funding the death nail called Obamacare. Cocktail caucus Republicans have joined the Democrats and are bleeding our nation dry. America’s only chance at surviving lies by applying direct pressure through hands of the liberty wing of the GOP—the Tea Party. For 2015, patriots can either resolve to join the liberty movement, or apathetically stand aside and watch our beloved America bleed to death. The choice is yours.


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