Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Five Baby Mountain Gorillas Found at Start of Congo Census

Now, don't get too excited, because this is not an indication of how the Virunga population is doing as a whole. BUT, the rangers are shocked because these five babies were all born and survived during the war period.

Things are not all peaceful yet either.

Despite a ceasefire in the months-long fighting, tracer from a heavy machine gun streaked across the sky close to the rangers headquarters late Thursday. Answering gunfire rattled up from the valley, in what a ranger said was a clash between the CNDP and the Rwandan Hutu rebels based in the park.

Here's a video of the gorillas and the babies (be patient, it tends to start and stop).

Saturday, November 29, 2008

T. Boone Pickens' Wife Proposes Horse Refuge

Here's hoping it works out.

The wife of the Texas oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens said {November 18} that she would create a refuge for wild horses, after the federal agency that manages them said it might have to kill some to control the herds and protect the Western range.

About 33,000 wild horses and burros roam the open range in 10 Western states. The federal Bureau of Land Management wants that population to be around 27,000 to protect the herd, the range and other foraging animals.

Horses that are too old or not adoptable by the public are sent to long-term holding facilities. The bureau now has about the same number of animals in holding facilities as on the range. The agency has said the costs of keeping horses in the holding facilities has caused officials to consider euthanasia as a last resort.

Mr. Pickens’s wife, Madeleine, said that she had proposed buying about one million acres to be a refuge for the horses now in holding facilities and that the bureau had agreed to give her the horses once she had the land."

Turkey Abuse in West Virginia Aviagen Plant

Overlooked this one. Another nasty farm animal abuse story. Whatever you think about PETA, I admire them for exposing this crap.

It's even got Chuck Jolley from the Cattle Network riled up.
Bottom line: If you’re running a business where you allow the kinds of shortcuts that let animal abuse happen, please sell it and leave the industry now. Find another line of work. If you’re caught by PETA or HSUS, please do not plead ignorance and vow to clean it up. It will be too late.

Animal Rights Activists Burn Wrong Car

A group calling itself Students and Workers for the Liberation of UCLA Primates burned 3 cars, none of which belonged to the individual they were targeting.

ALF is disputing the notion that the wrong cars were hit.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Humane Society and Changes in DC

Here is a good article on the HSUS.

Search Begins for Mountain Gorillas

Now that the rangers have been allowed back into Virunga, they are going to conduct a census to determine what's happened to the mountain gorillas living there. They have been out of contact since September 2007.

Mr {Emmanuel} de Merode and the 650 Virunga rangers have been forced to rely on second-hand reports from amateurs who paid their way into Mikeno where General Nkunda has been using some former rangers who defected to the CNDP.

Spirits are now high at Rumangabo. Within the last few days the Belgian conservationist led a posse of rangers back to their former patrol post at Bukima, inside the Mikeno sector of the park. Outside, Mr Mwanake is talking to Innocent Nburanumwe, another veteran ranger. They remain fretful over the situation and aware that the crisis could take another turn for the worst. "When there is a war there is no certainty, no security. We are not sure when we go to sleep if we will wake up in the morning."

Another nagging worry remains: the gorillas simply won't be there any more. Mr De Merode is refusing to think that way. Over the next month he and his staff will conduct a census of the mountain gorillas, hoping to find the population of roughly 200 unaffected by the tempest that has raged around them in the past 18 months. He says: "We've not had reports of any gorilla killings. It's incredibly exciting and any day now we're expecting good news."

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

100,000 Salmon Released in Sweden

From Biteback:
On the night of 21 November more than 100,000 salmon were liberated from two fish farms in northen Sweden.
These two fish farms are a part of the huge Swedish fish farming industry that kills over 5 billion fish every year.
In a fish farm, tens of thousands of fish live cramped in net-cages without any chance to engage in their natural behaviors, like traveling long distances.
Fish are individuals who feel both pain and stress, and to breed, keep them in cages and kill them, however it is done, is unacceptable.

We wanted to give as many of these individuals as possible a chance to live the rest of their lives in freedom, instead of ending up on a dinner table.
We realise that some of the released fish will die in the wild because they were born in captivity and may have trouble learning to finding their own food, etc. But there is a big difference between dying in freedom than in captivity, and it is guaranteed that more fish are going to survive in the wild than if they were left in the fish farm.
We are also aware that the liberation of the fish may have a negative effect on the ocean ecosystem. We hold the farmers responsible for any such effects, because it is their oppressive actions that forced us to act.

At Näske Lax AB more that 100,000 salmon were liberated by cutting all the net-cages that were holding the fish. A boat motor was also destroyed and some tires slashed. A spray can was emptied painting messages from the DBF.
The farm is not insured and after economic loses of millions of Swedish Kroner, the farmer doesn't think he will be able to open up the business again.

The second farm visited the same night was Ålands fiskförädlings, a big floating facility hundreds of meters out in the sea. After rowing out to the facility we cut as many net-cages as possible before dawn, releasing lots of fish.

Direct action saves lives!
Both by saving individual animals and also by economic sabotage we make it harder and less profitable to continue to torture and kill animals.

For the animals!
DBF (Swedish Animal Liberation Front)"

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Palin's Turkey Makes Letterman's Top 10

Now, I'm no fan of Sarah Palin's. I think she is an evil George Wallace in a dress. But I will say that this attention on her turkey slaughter interview is a bit hypocritical. Sure, there was a turkey being ground up behind her, but, come on. That is the reality of where Thanksgiving turkey dinners come from. It's not pretty or nice, with sugar and spice. It's ugly, bloody killing and that animal has to get to your plate somehow.

I hate it when people say "Happy Turkey Day" or, as today, "gobble gobble." Ef that! That turkey is NOT celebrating today while it's dead on your plate!

Having said that, any chance to insult Sarah Palin is worth it....so here's Letterman's Top 10.

Try a Vegan Thanksgiving!

Here's a site with some Thanksgiving recipes for vegans. I know it's a little late, but look it over and see if there's something you like. One should give thanks year round!

And you should try them out even if you're NOT a vegan.

Detecting Animal Cruelty

Per the ASPCA's cruelty FAQ, here are some signs.
Animal cruelty occurs when someone intentionally injures or harms an animal or when a person willfully deprives an animal of food, water or necessary medical care. Here are some signs that may indicate abuse or neglect:

* Tick or flea infestations
* Wounds on the body
* Patches of missing hair
* Extremely thin, starving animal
* Limping
* An owner striking or otherwise physically abusing an animal
* Dogs who are repeatedly left alone without food and water, and often chained in a yard
* Dogs who have been hit by cars—or are showing any of the signs listed here—and have not been taken to a veterinarian
* Dogs who are kept outside without shelter in extreme weather conditions
* Animals who cower in fear or act aggressively when approached by their owners

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Monday, November 24, 2008

Rangers Return to Virunga

The gorilla rangers have returned to Virunga after more than a year's exile. You can see how happy they are in this video.

Monkeys Work as Waiters in Japan

Oh brother.

Restaurants are always hit hard during economic downturns, but one restaurant in Japan has a novel approach to cutting costs: replace the wait staff with monkeys. The monkeys only work two hours a day, but bring in tourists from around the globe. They've even been deemed sanitary, so long as they wear their miniature uniforms.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Vick Allegedly Put Family Pets in Ring to be Killed

This is the allegation as reported on TMZ.
In just released report, a person identified as confidential witness No. 1 says Vick actually placed family pets in the ring against pit bulls owned by "Bad Newz Kennels" and watched as the animals ruthlessly attacked the domesticated dogs causing "major injuries."
Here's hoping he dies broke and alone.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Wingnut Pretty in Mink Calendar

Ick. The only thing more hideous then staring at Ann Coulter's mug for a whole month is Ann Coulter in fur. And they could at least pose her where I can't see her Adam's apple.

Panda Bites Idiot Seeking Hug

Some guy in China thought the panda looked so cute, he jumped a fence to give it a hug. The panda was having none of it, and bit him on the arms and legs. Pity he didn't get an artery to make this fool a Darwin Award winner...

Largest Ever Trafficking Bust in Africa

Just five days ago.

An operation across five Africa countries over weekend, targeting wildlife crime has led to arrest of almost 60 people and seizure of one ton of illegal elephant ivory, Interpol has reported.

The one-day sweep, code-named Operation Baba, targeted more than 50 locations, including local ivory markets, airports, border crossings and smuggling points, international policying body said.

Body said arrests and seizures were part of a five-country law enforcement operation co-ordinated by INTERPOL, and involved more than 300 law enforcement officers from police, customs, national wildlife and national intelligence agencies in Congo (Brazzaville), Ghana, Kenya, Uganda and Zambia, further saying this represented largest-ever international wildlife law enforcement operation conducted in Africa.

Gorilla Rangers Return to Virunga

Yay!

More than 120 Park Rangers of the Congolese Wildlife Authority, ICCN, today returned to Virunga National Park - 14 months after fleeing violent hostilities between rebels and government soldiers.

The Gorilla Sector of Virunga National Park is inhabited by 200 of the last remaining 700 critically endangered mountain gorillas in the world. Since September 2007, it has been occupied by rebels who had driven the rangers out.

"It is a huge step that all sides have agreed that the protection of Virunga as a World Heritage Site and its mountain gorillas is of sufficient priority to transcend political differences," said Virunga Park Director Emmanuel de Merode.


Now it's time to assess the damage.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Amazing Rescue of a Dog Stranded at Sea

A golden lab was rescued by a North Carolina fishing guide about a mile from land. It sounds like his owner left him in one boat while he went off fishing with a friend in another.

LAME!

Some commenters think the story is a hoax. Who knows. But at least the story has a happy ending.

Feliz Friday!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Palin Pardons Turkey, Gives Interview With Turkeys Being Slaughtered Behind Her

This woman is a complete dumbass. And yes, you will be hearing more about her here. We've been following her destructive policies since before she brought her trailer trash values down to the lower 48, and we'll keep following her until she leaves office.

Progress in the Congo? Relief for Virunga?

I hope so. We've got to get the gorilla rangers back into Virunga.

According to the AP...

The U.N. Security Council agreed Thursday to send 3,100 more peacekeeping troops to Congo, while rebels said they remained committed to a pullback from the front lines despite an army attack.

There are currently 17,000 peacekeepers in the vast Central African nation — the world's largest U.N. peacekeeping mission — but they have been unable to stop the fighting.


The rebels are pulling back from the front lines.

Rebels in Congo pulled hundreds of fighters back from several front-line positions as promised on Wednesday in what the U.N. said was a welcome step toward brokering peace in the volatile nation.

Vegetarian Web Site

Here's another web site for vegetarians. Really good, basic information. Consider it vegetarianism 101.

Bush Administration Seeks to Screw Environment as Much as Possible Before Leaving Office

They are seeking a new rule that would allow mining and development without a full scientific assessment. Little wonder, as the Republican Party and this unpopular knucklehead of a president are both anti-science and anti-environment.

Look at is one among many middle fingers we can expect from him before he leaves office.

Worst. President. Ever.

Casting Call: Need Vegans

An Animal Friendly Life has the details about a new documentary on vegans.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More on Mulesing

From The Age:
Animal rights activists intend ramping up their international campaign against Australian wool after producers indicated they would not stick to a deadline for phasing out mulesing.

The controversial practice - in which folds of skin are cut from a sheep's rear to prevent fly and maggot infestation - was due to end by 2010.

But a national vote of producers has elected a group of pro-mulesing directors to control Australian Wool Innovation (AWI).
Now PETA and others are upset about this because the new directors say they won't be held to deadlines.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Rescued Chimp Bonds with Human Caregiver

Sweet pictures of the baby chimp rescued from the Congolese military.

So much like any child....

Quote of the Week

"It is not enough to be compassionate. You must act. There are two aspects to action. One is to overcome the distortions and afflictions of your own mind, that is, in terms of calming and eventually dispelling anger. This is action out of compassion. The other is more social, more public. When something needs to be done in the world to rectify the wrongs, if one is really concerned with benefiting others, one needs to be engaged, involved."


~ Dalai Lama

Ontario Updates Animal Welfare Law

Finally. It's the first update since 1919. That's right 1919. Yeesh.
Bill 50 makes it a provincial offence to abuse any animal, and it establishes the strongest penalties in the country for those charged with animal cruelty -- including the potential to prohibit offenders from owning animals ever again. The Ontario SPCA now has the ability to inspect facilities that keep animals for exhibition, entertainment, boarding, hire or sale. For the first time, animal care standards will be established and failure to comply with these standards will be an offence.
Glad they're finally doing something, but really, why has it taken this long?

Monday, November 17, 2008

PETA Has a Europe Blog

And here it is....

Vegan Lunchbox Blog Worth a Read

I found this blog today and it's got some cool recipes for vegans. I also like reading people's ideas about food.

Congo Rebels Claim They Are Protecting the Gorillas

This New York Times article doesn't have much new to report. I did notice this though....

Officials with Virunga National Park are urging the rebels and government troops to allow them to return to work. The rebels insist the gorillas are safe.

“We are protecting them,” said Babu Amani, a rebel spokesman.


In the meantime...

France began circulating a draft resolution on Monday that would temporarily authorize an additional 3,085 troops and police officers for the peacekeeping mission in the Congo to protect civilians in the eastern part of the country.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

ALF Activists Glue Locks of U Cal Primate Researcher

From the website:
Just after sunrise on Halloween, a sole trick or treater descended on the home of University of California-San Francisco primate vivisector Stephen Lisberger. As Stephen and his wife Chieko slept in San Francisco, tubes of superglue were used to fill his front door locks. UCSF vivisectors and officials shall consider this a gentle halloween prank, but this is just the beginning. We will increase our level of tactics as long as non-human primates and other animals are tortured to death at the hands of those driven by profit and as long as the University of California shows a complete disregard for the suffering of the non-human prisoners.

UCSF -- you've already had to pay out over $90,000 for violations of the Animal Welfare Act for Lisberger's experiments on primates that include fluid deprivation, gluing metal coils to their eyelids, restraint chairs and invasive surgeries. How's thousands, even millions more, in damage to the researchers property and your school sound?

"Now this war has two sides,"

Send Obama a Message About Factory Farming

The Humane Society makes it easy right here.

Dogfighting Ring Broken in Texas

Looks like a lot of people, and dogs, were involved.
Authorities already have seized 187 animals from Harris, Montgomery and Tyler counties connected to the operation. As many as 100 people attended the fights, placing bets as high as $1,000 for a single match.

Detailed records kept by those involved should help authorities prosecute the eight people arrested Friday and the 47 other suspects who have been indicted, but not yet arrested.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Veterinary Association Did Not Support Prop 2

The American Veterinary Medical Association did NOT support Proposition 2. Now they want to be involved in the rule-making.

If you want to know why they opposed it, here's a link to their reasoning.

Lame.

UN Envoy Arrives in Congo for Peace Talks

Things are very, very bad. It's a humanitarian and ecological disaster. The UN has got to wrap this up.

A Congolese minister says that "In 2007 alone, we recorded the slaughter of 15 mountain gorillas and more than 20,000 antelopes," ....adding that in the past decade the number of hippopotami had fallen from 30,000 to 1,000.

30,000 to 1,000? 15? 20,000? I don't have the words to react anymore.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Michael Vick Expects to Return to the NFL

This according to his bankruptcy attorneys.

"The Debtor has every reason to believe that upon his release, he will be reinstated into the NFL, resume his career and be able to earn a substantial living," Vick's attorneys wrote in a disclosure statement filed before a hearing Thursday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Norfolk.

Paul K. Campsen, another Vick attorney in the bankruptcy proceeding, said he had not had any contact with the NFL, nor had Vick. While Vick still has a contract with the Falcons, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell would have the final say on his return, which he is counting on after he is released.

"That's the hope," Campsen said in an interview. "I think efforts will be made once we get past this."


His court date for felony animal cruelty and dogfighting charges is set for November 25.

Mad about the Congo

I suppose I've come to this pretty late and gorilla people already knew that this trouble was brewing. The rebel forces in the Congo have controlled the gorilla sector of Virunga since 2007. Clearly, I haven't been following this as I should have been.

Right now, I am frustrated with the EU and the UN. This whole mess reminds me of other similar situations...Kosovo, Bosnia, Rwanda. There is a crisis and the UN and the EU do the proverbial "fiddling while Rome burns." What is the point of having UN peacekeepers when they are incapable of keeping the peace? How far can diplomacy really go?

I am no supporter of the Iraq War. I think we should have NEVER entered that country and we have bungled the post-invasion period. But we were EFFECTIVE militarily. We got Saddam. When the US puts its mind to something military, it gets it done.

Which is why I wonder whether the key factor missing here is US leadership. It seems like the UN and the EU sit around and complain about American initiative, but can't seem to get anything done without it.

The US won't get involved. There's no oil there and we've got two wars going on. Unfortunately, there is no strategic interest for a new president to risk important political capital.

So that leaves us with the UN and the EU. Again.

What does it take for them to grow a pair?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

How to Tell Your Cat is Trying to Kill You

Funny comic.

Gorilla E-News from the Dian Fossey Fund

I signed up yesterday to get email alerts from the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund. I called the fund and spoke to the front desk person who said this was the best way to get updates from them about the situation in the Congo.

I thought things would settle down after the election, but now I'm tied up in knots again! I am so worried about these animals.

Petition Drive Launched Asking Obama to Adopt Shelter Dog

You can sign it here.

Visit the Official Virunga Forest Web Site for Updates

Here is a link to the official web site for the Virunga National Park. I feel so stupid for never knowing about it.

Great blog too. Today's post is about one little chimp who was rescued from the military.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Mountain Gorillas Left Unprotected in Virunga

Of course, there is more war in the Congo. Always, always, war. And the mountain gorillas are once again vulnerable. The rebels have taken over the wildlife rangers' headquarters and the gorillas are unprotected. Unless they flee to the Rwandan side of the forest, they may die.

About 200 of the 700 remaining mountain gorillas are in this forest. They don't breed in captivity. Once they're gone, they're gone.

Why can't we just leave them in peace?

UK Birds Poisoned by Laced Bait

More animal cruelty in Britain. Great birds being poisoned by laced venison cubes in Scotland.

Monkeys Stolen from UK Wildlife Park

Horrible and cruel. I can't imagine the trauma the older monkey is going through. I hope they are returned.

Thieves have stolen two monkeys from an enclosure at a wildlife park, police said today.

The female squirrel monkeys were snatched after raiders broke into the Cotswold Wildlife Park, near Burford, Oxfordshire, last night.

Staff discovered the enclosure had been entered and the animals were missing at 7am this morning.

The stolen monkeys were called Stripe, who in her 20s was the oldest in the group at the park, and Deana, who was in her teens.

Curator Jamie Craig said the thieves cut through a number of fences and then kicked down a heavy door to gain entry to the area where the animals were sleeping.

"...My fear is that the two stolen will end up in a bird cage in someone's lounge."

Monday, November 10, 2008

Ban on Ape Testing Proposed in EU

Their is a proposal to ban testing on apes in the EU. Is this a solution to a problem that doesn't exist?
Europe's environment chief plans to ban laboratory tests on mankind's closest relatives -- chimpanzees, gorillas, bonobos and orangutans -- in a clampdown on animal testing by the drugs industry and other laboratories.

But some animal welfare groups and researchers accused the European Union of masking weak regulation with empty gestures, as no great apes have been used in EU research for six years.

"Today's draft legislation does include a great ape test ban, but as no apes are used in EU research at the moment, this is considered by many animal advocates as something of a token gesture," said the Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research, a British-based charity which opposes using animals in experiments.

Welcome Lou!

Our last two hamsters passed away in September and are now buried under some berry bushes. Since then, I've been looking for another dwarf hamster (I currently have two teddy bear hamsters, Doris and Heidi). Finally, on Sunday, I found one at our animal shelter.

Our new Russian dwarf is named LOU!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

India's Wildlife Crime Unit Makes First Arrests

It sure looks like India is taking wildlife crime investigation seriously.

In its first ever independent operation since its inception last year, the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau has unearthed an illegal pet trade racket arresting one and seizing four live Indian Tent turtles from Mahipalpur area here...

The entire operation, including arrest and seizure, was executed by the WCCB officials on Tuesday. The operation was conducted without taking help from any other agency. However, the accused was kept in the Vasant Kunj police station as the bureau does not have its own lock up space.

"It was not a big haul but an important one as illegal trade of beautiful and small animals as pets is going on, thus adversely affecting the conservation efforts," Deputy Director of WCCB Ramesh Pandey said.

Forensics Used to Solve Wildlife Crime in India

In India, forensic tests helped establish guilt in the killing of 10 endangered lions.

Between February and March 2007, 10 lions were killed by poachers in three different incidents at the Gir National Park (GNP) which houses 360 Asiatic lions, the only surviving population in the wild.

Eighteen months later, 30 tribals belonging to the Baheliya tribe were found guilty by a local court in Junagadh and sentenced to three years imprisonment

The accused were subjected to forensic tests, which established that their nails, spears and animal traps carried traces of flesh, blood and hair of the poached lions. The analysis determined the species of the sample as well as the unique DNA fingerprint of one particular animal, whose flesh was found on the equipment. The link was clearly established.

To confirm the line of investigation, in a yet another unprecedented move, a narco-analysis test was conducted on one of the accused, a woman. It confirmed the initial findings.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Stay Vigilant

Just because McCain and Palin lost this time around doesn't mean we can let our guard down. Whether we are environmentalists, animal rights activists, or simply supporters of democracy, we have to remain vigilant. Especially about Sarah Palin and the possibility that this woman will return in 2012.

Americans are a skittish bunch. It doesn't take much to turn us. And the Bushies and Palinites are still here. They will simply scurry off to their think tanks and Fox News. But they are waiting for their opportunity to come back and wreak their havoc. We have to make sure we don't give them the chance.

I don't expect Barack Obama to be a god. He'll make decisions I don't support (like off-shore oil drilling), but we dodged a BIG BULLET this time around.

I hope to keep an eye on our wolf-killing Sarah. I fear she'll be back.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Earth Friendly Makeup - But What About Animals?

Here's an article highlighting some "earth friendly" makeup brands. The article talks about health and safety, but mentions nothing about whether these products are animal-tested. It doesn't even raise the issue as an eco-concern.

Now, it may be that none of these brands are tested on animals (certainly not Sheila McCartney's Care right?), but the article made me question the assumption that "earth friendly" is naturally equated with "animal friendly."

Whale Wars on Animal Planet

Starts tonight.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Research for Policy Wonks

Thanks to Animalblog for the heads up.
HumaneSpot.org is a unique research website tailored to the needs of animal advocates. [They] offer a wide range of useful tools and resources, including nearly 1,000 independent research studies relating to animal issues.

These people are serious. You need to apply to gain access and the applications are reviewed.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Will Obama Rescue a Dog?

Hey, if it's important enough to mention in his speech that he was getting a puppy, it's important enough for us to talk about it. He did say in the past that he would adopt a dog. Let's hope he sends a progressive message by giving a shelter dog a new home. Maybe he could get two...

LA Unleashed has a good roundup of reaction from the Humane Society and PETA.

Prop 2 Passes in California

Proposition 2 has been passed in California. From the campaign website:
(Nov. 4, 2008) – Voters in California approved an historic ballot measure to halt the inhumane confinement of animals on factory farms by an overwhelming margin. As of 11 PM PST, Prop 2 was leading 62% to 38%.

“California voters have taken a stand for decency and compassion and said that the systemic mistreatment of animals on factory farms cannot continue," said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States, the primary back of the YES! on Prop 2 campaign. "All animals deserve humane treatment, including animals raised for food.”

Proposition 2 ends the practice of confining certain animals raised for food in crates and cages so small the animals can barely move. Prop 2 requires that factory farms provide enough space for animals to stand up, turn around and extend their limbs. It applies to breeding pigs, egg laying hens and veal calves. Prop 2 goes into effect in January of 2015, giving factory farms six years to shift to different housing systems.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A Historic Moment

Barack Obama is the next President. Congratulations to him and all the people that worked on his campaign.

Yes we can!

Monday, November 3, 2008

You Know What To Do

And, you know what not to do, which is vote for the 72 year old crank who doesn't know how to use The Google. Nor, I might add, his dingbat trailer trash sidekick who thinks that voluntary dumbassery somehow gives her insights into the "common" man or woman.

Vote Obama. Our country cannot afford the destructive policies, nor the hateful divisive beliefs of the Republican Party.

That's all I have to say.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Gordon Ramsey Disappoints Me

I know, I know, I shouldn't be surprised. The guy is a real jerk on Hell's Kitchen, but we watch him on the British show Kitchen Nightmares and I've learned a lot from the guy. He's more human and sensitive on the show. And he has such a sense and love of food.

But, according to my husband, the guy hates vegetarians and won't allow his daughter to marry one. What the f^&^! What is so threatening to chefs like Ramsey and David Chang? I think part of it is their egos, but it's also their training. When I watch Top Chef, these people can hardly make a chocolate cake without throwing some lamb in there.

Come on.

Egg Companies Accused of Price Collusion

The Justice Department has opened investigations. It's in the Wall Street Journal.

Fresh-egg farmers acted together through a series of export shipments, organized by United Egg Producers, an industry cartel whose 250-plus members include virtually all of the nation's big egg producers. By removing a small fraction of eggs that would have been bound for U.S. sales and arranging instead for their export, United Egg helped tighten domestic supply and drive up the price of eggs across the country, according to newsletters and other documents that United Egg sent to its members.

Not only did they arrange for exports, they also are accused of colluding to limit production and to increase cage sizes so that fewer hens can be kept. (This is actually good for animal welfare, but goes to show that only greed will motivate these bastards to do anything.) Scarcity then leads to high prices.

Wow. Tomato growers are accused of the same thing.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Japanese Whaling Ship Found Guilty of Violating Environmental Agreement

The Japanese whaler Bluebird has been stripped of it's Panamanian flag. From Sea Shepherd:
The Japanese whaling fleet supply ship Oriental Bluebird has been de-flagged and fined by the Panamanian Registry after being found guilty of:

Using the ship for purposes it was not licensed for (i.e. carrying whale meat rather than oil)

Violating the MARPOL convention (a treaty designed to eliminate the deliberate, negligent or accidental release of oil and other harmful substances from ships into the marine environment) after illegally re-fuelling whaling vessels in Antarctic waters.

The illegal operations of the Oriental Bluebird underscore the illegality of the entire Japanese whaling fleet. Japanese whalers are targeting endangered whales in the legally established Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary in violation of a global moratorium on commercial whaling.
I'm surprised that nobody has ever put pressure on the Panamanians to not register whaling vessels in the first place.