Monday, October 27, 2008

Voters decide whether animals need more space

From the Washington Post, via Los Angeles, California.

I have written a few articles in the past about the cruel and inhumane confinement that many animals on factory farms exist in. I will continue to write them until I feel the message has gotten across, and similar initiatives have passed in all fifty states.
I personally believe that battery cages, gestation crates, and veal crates, among other factory farm atrocities, are cruel and unnecessary punishment of innocent animals. Just because we're going to eat them doesn't mean we have to torture them first. I hope everyone visits Farm Sanctuary and sees what I'm talking about.
If you think I'm right about cruel confinement that's great. If you don't, that's okay too. But either way I hope you read the article, and do a little research about the humane and food safety issues behind this ballot measure.
What really rankles me is the amount of money people have put into campaigns to either support or defeat this measure. I can never understand why people throw all their money at campaigning instead of just going out and DOING the thing. With the money both sides have thrown at the problem, they could have probably gotten together and done a lot to come to some sort of compromise on the issue. Like raised the money necessary to help large-scale egg-farming operations convert from battery cages to a cage-free operation. Why do people always have to use their money to FIGHT?
Again, my personal thought, everything comes down to the consumer. If the consumer shows the operator that they want a different product, or they are willing to pay for something to be done differently, the operator will eventually have to bow to the consumer. So California voters, if you want cage-free, antibiotic-free, disease-free laying hens laying your eggs, get out the vote and tell them so.
My final thought on factory farms: I don't like'em. I believe in local economy, and supporting your local farmers, not giant corporations. For a few months now I've been getting the majority of my eggs from seven free-range hens of varying breeds we keep on our farm, and they do me just fine. However, if anyone knows the secret to getting hardboiled farm fresh brown eggs to peel cleanly, I'd be obliged to know it.

Still on my blacklist: Dairy Cow tail-docking. When will it stop?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Surviving the Recession. Ending an addiction.

Well, plummeting stock markets and the like have done us one favor in the past month. They helped make the price of gas almost attainable again. Here in my area its around 2.65, with some places higher and some lower. In California I don't think it has dropped below 3 dollars yet, but there has definitely been a decline in cost. Crude is down from 117 a barrel to about 66 dollars. Despite the fact that fuel cost is down, a recent poll says that demand for gas is still down as much as 6% from where it was previously at higher prices. Our economic crisis has finally done what all the begging, pleading, preaching, and cajoling of conservationists could not: Cut the demand for fossil fuels.
Here is my message to you: Don't let politicians and capitalists convince you that the only way to save our economy is to drive more and shop more. All you are doing by taking such action is helping to continue to build our national economy on a culture of waste. You're throwing out the baby with the bathwater.
We've been given a chance. Our first big break in ending our addiction to oil, and our wasteful habits concerning water and energy conservation. We need to take this break and run with it. Build momentum, don't fall back into the same old routine! Life's tough for everyone right now, but if you've been able to get by on ten dollars less in gas a week, then please, I urge you to continue to do so. Gasoline isn't something you can buy when it is on sale and stockpile like Ramen Noodles and Cola from Costco. You buy it, you burn it up, and its gone. Money down the drain, followed by acid rain. Now is the time to make an investment in yourself, your family, our economy, our country, and our world. And you don't have to do a thing. And that thing is to give in to the pressure of politicians and lobbyists who would have you believe that buying into our oil addiction is the only way to support our country.
Cutting our demand for fossil fuels is the only way to get the message across to our energy companies and government that we need new sources of clean, renewable energy. Not just energy we can live with. Energy we can live by.
I have no links, no alerts, no petitions for you to sign today. Just food for thought. Eat up.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Everglades are drowning?

Its not something you hear everyday. Here we've all been led to believe that the suburbs and Disney are draining all the 'glades and leaving them high and dry. If only it were that simple! Read the full story here:

Btw, folks, sorry for the lack of updates this month. I had a little accident that required some stitches and made typing uncomfortable, but I'm back in the game now! Hope everyone has had a good October so far. All I can say is I wish Florida would send us some of that rain!

Monday, October 20, 2008

"Drill, baby, drill" is not the answer!

Courtesy of Care2:

The scope of environmental damage from Hurricane Ike is only now becoming apparent: at least half a million gallons of crude oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico and water spaces of Louisiana and Texas.

Stop Big Oil and demand the clean energy future we deserve. »

The Minerals Management Service, which oversees oil production in federal waters offshore, said the storm destroyed at least 52 oil platforms and another 32 were severely damaged.

And yet Big Oil and its allies continue to say that drilling off-shore and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is environmentally safe. We cannot allow Congress to be fooled by Big Oil's smooth talk.

Urge your Representative and Senators to reject the tired pro-drilling policies of the past and move our country towards the clean energy economy we need. »