Friday, March 7, 2014

Fish for Friday

Edited by Morris Dean

[Anonymous selections from recent correspondence]

People who like to beat, torture, and sexually abuse cows now have yet another safe haven in which to do so. Idaho has passed an "ag gag" law that makes it illegal for those concerned with animal welfare to take any of the logical undercover steps to expose abuse. Similar laws were previously enacted in Iowa, Utah, and Missouri. By the way, yes, you did read that correctly: some people who work on dairy farms apparently enjoy sexually abusing cows, as documented in an undercover operation in Idaho in 2012. Under the new Idaho law, anyone convicted of working undercover to expose people sexually abusing cows is now in more legal trouble than the abusers. Got milk? Excerpt:

The [2012] video was used to prosecute employees at the dairy, and it convinced Idaho’s dairy industry to create a worker training program to help prevent animal abuse. But it also set in motion a concerted effort by the dairy industry to make sure such embarrassing videos weren’t made in the state again.
    So-called ag-gag bills have had trouble making their way through legislatures recently. Fifteen were introduced in 11 states last year, but none of them were signed into law. Two bills have also been defeated in Indiana and New Hampshire so far this year....
    Arizona and Tennessee are currently considering similar bills, and some are concerned that Idaho’s bill will embolden legislators and the agricultural industry in those states, and elsewhere.
    “One case doesn’t make a trend, but at the same time it doesn’t surprise me that the industry continues to try,” said Paul Shapiro, vice president of Farm Animal Protection at the Humane Society. “It’s now clearer than ever that the dairy industry will stop at nothing to hide its record of animal cruelty.”
Between abuses perpetrated by U.S. soldiers on prisoners in Iraq, the death and torture squads trained and funded by our military in Central and South America, and news accounts about farm workers sexually abusing cows, can you even imagine what people overseas must think about Americans? And to think we once allegedly set the standard for decency.

We had a wonderful guide for our 15 days in India, traveling with 25 other people. Being in India is like stepping back in time 100 years or more. You see the disparity between the wealthy and tremendous poverty in each city. At one time, food was placed on leaves and the people would consume their food and throw the leaf on the ground. Now the leaf has been replaced with paper and plastic and people are still throwing these items on the ground which means there is vast amounts of litter throughout many of the cities.

In the United States we are inclined to think that if we could just find a way to prevent guns from falling into the hands of the "wrong" people we could prevent mass killings. This incident in China reminds us that if a person, or a group of people, want to carry out a mass attack, they will find a way to do it: "Separatists blamed for China knife attack; 33 dead." Excerpt:
The attack was the deadliest violence attributed to Uyghur-Han conflicts since riots in the Xinjiang capital of Urumqi in 2009, in which Uyghurs stormed the streets of the city, targeting Han people in seemingly random violence that included the killing of women and children. A few days later, Han vigilante mobs armed with sticks and bats attacked Uyghurs in the same city. Nearly 200 people died.
As you know, Governor Jan Brewer vetoed the legislation in Arizona that would allow discrimination by law. The NFL's position on discrimination was influential in this decision. Even though the bill was vetoed in Arizona, these discrimination laws are being attempted in other states. This is why we must continue to ask the NFL to pledge not to bring the biggest event they have to any states that discriminate.
    Let's continue to gather our voices together and share our message. Ask your friends to sign this petition. I've made a video to promote the petition and to let people know why I feel it is important. You can share my video or make one of your own.

    There will be many actions we can take together over the coming days to make sure the NFL knows how much they can contribute to making a better America for us all by making this very simple pledge. Right now, let's get out there and draft some more players for our team.

Former LAPD Sergeant Michael Williamson, who was the 2012 Democratic Candidate for California's Congressional District that Kerri Condley is now running to represent, has endorsed her candidacy.
    Mr. Williamson had a 26-year career as a law enforcement officer serving Orange County, Riverside County, and the Los Angeles Police Department. He currently serves as a panel attorney for the Los Angeles Police Protective League and is a community college instructor teaching Criminal Justice and Rules of Evidence at Santa Ana College. He says of Kerri Condley:

She is a tenacious advocate for the 42nd Congressional District. Her efforts and accomplishments working successfully in the community and her ability to unify the diverse members of the community make Kerri an ideal candidate. Kerri is a strong advocate for the community, for women, for the district, and she is the right candidate at the right time. That it is why I happily and strongly support and endorse Kerri.
    The people living in the 42nd District deserve a representative who is present in their communities. They need a leader who ensures their voices are heard and someone who will fight for real progress. That is why Kerri is running for Congress.

Werner Heisenberg, Kurt Gödel, and Noam Chomsky walk into a bar. Heisenberg turns to the other two and says: “Clearly this is a joke, but how can we figure out if it’s funny or not?” Gödel replies: “We can’t know that because we’re inside the joke.” Chomsky says: “Of course it’s funny. You’re just telling it wrong.”

Paul Krugman gets it, again: "Envy Versus Anger." Excerpt:
What’s really driving most of the ire is the sense that many of the rich didn’t actually earn that position, that they grew rich at the rest of America’s expense.
    And what has happened since 2007 that might justify such a belief? Um, how about all those .01 percenters who were boasting about what a great job they were doing, but turned out to be leading us into a catastrophic financial crisis? What about the much-admired leaders who assured us that Wall Street was doing great stuff, and turned out to be totally clueless?

The year was 1955:
    "If they raise the minimum wage to $1.00, nobody will be able to hire outside help at the store."

"I'm afraid to send my kids to the movies any more. Ever since they let Clark Gable get by with saying 'damn' in Gone with the Wind, it seems every new movie has either 'hell' or 'damn' in it."

"I read the other day where some scientist thinks it's possible to put a man on the moon by the end of the century. They even have some fellows they call astronauts preparing for it down in Texas."

"When I first started driving, who would have thought gas would someday cost 25 cents a gallon? Guess we'd be better off leaving the car in the garage."

Never trust an atom. They make up everything.

Oddities of the Human Body:
    A human head remains conscious for about 15 to 20 seconds after it has been decapitated.
    It takes 17 muscles to smile and 43 to frown.
    Humans can make do longer without food than sleep. Provided there is water, the average human could survive a month to two months without food depending on their body fat and other factors. Sleep-deprived people, however, start experiencing radical personality and psychological changes after only a few sleepless days. The longest recorded time anyone has ever gone without sleep is 11 days, at the end of which the experimenter was awake, but stumbled over words, hallucinated, and frequently forgot what he was doing.
    Every human spent about half an hour as a single cell after being conceived. Shortly afterward, the cells begin rapidly dividing and begin forming the components of a tiny embryo.
    Right-handed people live, on average, nine years longer than left-handed people do.
    Humans are the only animals to produce emotional tears.

A student travelling on a train looks up and sees Einstein sitting next to him. Excited, he asks: “Excuse me, professor. Does Boston stop at this train?”

Limerick of the Week:
Now I have dementia, I cannot think of thingies
that always used to be all strung in line on stringies.
    Now my mind's like peanut butter,
    everything in there's all a-nutter,
my brain's dried up and lost its springy-springies.
Copyright © 2014 by Morris Dean

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  1. Thanks to all whose correspondence was selected for today's fish: Abuse, wealth & poverty, guns & knives, discrimination, endorsement, telling, consuming, handouts, payouts, 1955, We the People, bodies, Einstein, thingies....

  2. A little late on my comment, sorry, I am guessing the knife people are the Uyghur---just think what they could have done with an AK-47. I have never hear anyone say if you get rid of guns people will stop killing each other. It's the ease and numbers that guns produce that make them more deadly than a knife.