Dazi Acres Pork vs. The Other Guys

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When you’re raising animals beyond organically you’re pretty sure the end product is going to be really good but you’re never sure until you actually get the end product.

Last week we took our five hogs to the abattoir for slaughter; it was a little sad for us…these were the first pigs we’d raised and, while they were, at times, a troublesome lot, they were also happy to see us and loved nothing more than having their backs and necks rubbed three times a day. We also made the mistake of looking back as we prepared to leave the parking lot; all five were staring at us from behind their cell gate as if to say, “Where are you going? Why are you leaving us here, we who have been raised in open woods and grassy pastures; we who have loved you?” We’re never looking back again.

After tasting the gloriously sweet meat these pigs provided, we now know that yes, indeed, we’re doing it right. Our pigs were better off, our land is better off, and those customers who had the foresight to buy one of the hogs are better off.

We spoke with the butcher about our pigs and asked him how he thought the livers looked (this is a sure sign of an animal that’s been raised in a healthy environment). He said, “I have 19 hogs in there and only 5 had good livers.” Three guesses and the first two don’t count as to whose hogs those were.

5 out of 19…only 26% of those hogs had healthy, usable livers. That means 74% of them didn’t! 74%…what a staggering number.

Less staggering is that 100% of our hogs were healthy.

Original Post: Dazi Acres

Note:  Dazi Acres is the farm to which our former contributor and all around good guy Snarky Basterd has defected.  They use innovative land management to grow quality, non modifed, food.  Check out their site and their store, at the link!

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Odds and Sods and Other Interesting Stuff

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t least I hope you find the other stuff interesting.

Regulation Mania

Our poor country has suffered from regulatory mania for decades. It is the nature of the so-called progressive to want to control every aspect of our lives. Environmental radicals seem to care more about the well being of planet earth than they do about the well being of mankind. These people we know also have a political agenda and it is way to the left. Regulatory mania reached a peak in recent decades due to what is called “regulatory capture”. Regulatory capture occurs when the radical element that promotes an area being regulated manage to get themselves hired by the regulatory agency. When they get into a position where they have some control over who gets hired they hire like-minded people. Eventually, like in today’s Environmental Protection Agency, they are the agency.  In theory, the EPA should be an arm’s length mediator between protecting the publics well being from unwarranted contamination of the environment we all live in and protecting the publics well by finding ways that industries can still operate to produce products we want and need. Today the EPA cares nothing about our wants and needs.

I remember when the EPA was created by the Nixon administration and the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act became law. After the regulations were promulgated to to put the Clean Water  Act into action, one of first projects that caught national attention was the need to clean up Lake Erie. The consensus among environmentalist at the time was it would take over 100 years to clean up Lake Erie from the industrial waste that had been dumped into the lake for years and before commercial fishing could resume. As I recall, commercial fishing resumed in earnest in less than five years. So, with environmental activists, hysteria is a commonly used tool and, of course, the remedy is always setting regulatory standards at extreme levels.

Two stories in the news today caught my attention. One has to do with contaminated pork and the other has to do with a mini-cold rush occurring in a Colorado county. Along with comments on the second story  I will share with you some ithings peculiar about gold panning in Vanezuela that I think you will find interesting.

Contaminated Pork Scare

This ABC News headline was report by Yahoo News this morning_

Study Finds Most Pork Contaminated

That’s kind of scary, right? Well, there may be real reason to be scared but from what this article can tell us it may be a bit of over kill.

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A sample of raw pork products from supermarkets around the United States found that yersinia enterocolitica, a lesser-known food-borne pathogen, was present in 69 percent of the products tested, according to a study released today by Consumer Reports.

According to the story the Center for Disease Control and Prevention says 100,000 people per year are infected by this pathogen and suffer symptoms of fever, cramps and bloody diarrhea. Well, not good, but from what we are told not life threatening. Later in the story the reader is advised to cook pork well and a specific temperature is even given. Maybe I am wrong, but I thought it was common knowledge that pork should be well cooked. I remember being told by my parents and by my health class teachers that pork should be well cooked for reasons other than today’s story. There is a parasite common in pigs that can survive light cooking and if eaten will take up residence in the new host and can cause serious health problems, even death. So, let’s hope there isn’t an unnecessary panic caused among the consumers that would hurt the pork industry. maybe a public service announcement campaign is in order to reeducate people about the proper way to cook pork. Also, let’s hope this doesn’t result in a lot of unnecessary new regulations if the problem isn’t any more serious than what it now appears to be.

Let’s Regulate Gold Panning

All of my professional career was in the mining industry and the last twenty years that I worked were in gold mining. It was god mining that brought me to Venezuela going on twenty-one years ago. So, I do have some knowledge of gold mining techniques including panning.

Panning for gold is ancient art. Alluvial particles of gold get carried down some rivers and is deposited in different places for a number of reason. This occurs because somewhere up-stream, the river erodes a vein structure in a rock outcrop, in which Mother Nature deposited gold. For many years in the US, people have made a hobby of panning for gold. No doubt they have dreams of finding a large nugget or even tracing their small findings to a mother lode. Simply stated the panning for alluvial gold is quite simple. It is an art and that art can be learned. Gold planners use what looks like a large concave plate, which may have several circular ridges in it. A panner will select a river that has some history for having alluvial gold in it and these rivers are often in areas with a history of gold mining, usually underground mines. The panner works normally close to a shore. He looks for an area where faster waters slow down over a more quite pool. Gold particles are moved along river by fast currents. The particles fall out of the stream and deposit where the water slows down. Gravity never fails to work.  An artisan panner will scoop up a hand full over river bottom material and place in the pan. Then using some of the river water they will use a motion that swirls the small pebbles and sand and finer particles with the water. They use a constant rhythm and tap one point on the pan with one hand. Always tapping on the same point. In this way the lighter particle are washed away. Bigger pieces will pick off and thrown away, too. In time, a small amount of small and fine particles will remain, which are still present because they are more dense than everything else that was put in the pan. The swirling and tapping will cause the remaining material to form an elongated oval shape. If there are any gold particles they will be visible on one extreme of this oval.  Okay. From years of observation,I have seen no evidence of any environmental harm caused by artisan gold panning. None the less the officials of Larimer County, Colorado believe they have a problem that must be controlled. Apparently, because of the high gold prices today, there are many more artisan gold panners make use of a river in this county. The local officials think they need to pass a law banning gold panning in their river or, at least, “REGULATE”  it to specific areas and times. I think this is a shame. As my wife often says: “When government finds people being happy, they have to do something to stop it.” It does seem that way, doesn’t it?

And now a brief story I hope you will enjoy about gold panning in Venezuela.

Venezuela has a long history of gold ming dating back to the first explorers from Europe. Near the town of El Callao, where I used to spend several days a week for over six years, is a river where local artisan gold panners have been practicing their art for more than a hundred years. Here is what I think you will find interesting. You would not want wade or swim in this or other near by rivers. Not because they are contaminated or anything like that. The reason is due to the dangerous things that live in these rivers. There are , for example, electric ells. Big ones. There are piranhas in these rivers. Normally not a threat unless you have an open cut, but just the same, not what you want to encounter while wading in a river. The third thing may be more myth than fact, but the story goes like this. People are warned to never urinate while in the rivers. Supposedly there is a small parasite which inhabits the rivers, which is attracted to urine. They are said to follow the trail of urine and enter the source and take up residence there. Now that is not a pleasant thought, isn’t it?

Well, now you know what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?

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When you hear about Obama's "Jobs Bill," Think Porkulus

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Well, we have the “Jobs Bill” Porkulus version whatever, filled with all new shovel ready or  infrastructure nonexistent jobs.  It was well know that that the administration went out of their way to avoid the words, “stimulus, shovel ready,” and the like.  Obviously, they are following the tried and true regressive tradition of repackaging old failed policies with shiny new wrappers.

I think we ought to take off the shiny wrapper, revealing the failure underneath, shall we?  And what better way to do that than to look at the original Porkulus?  Here are some excerpts from CH posts on that steaming pile of failure called the Porkulus.

Irony That the Media Misses

Remember when folks on the right were telling everyone that the messiah was using the porkulus to pay back his supporters?  Remember that no one listened?  Well, the pork has returned to the stimulus.  This from the USA Today:

WASHINGTON — Billions of dollars in federal aid delivered directly to the local level to help revive the economy have gone overwhelmingly to places that supported President Obama in last year’s presidential election.

That aid — about $17 billion — is the first piece of the administration’s massive stimulus package that can be tracked locally. Much of it has followed a well-worn path to places that regularly collect a bigger share of federal grants and contracts, guided by formulas that have been in place for decades and leave little room for manipulation.

Yes, yes, of course, the porkulus money goes to the places that supported the messiah, but at the same time, it was supposed to go there anyway?

But wait!  There’s more!

“There’s no politics at work when it comes to spending for the recovery,” White House spokesman Robert Gibbs says.

Counties that supported Obama last year have reaped twice as much money per person from the administration’s $787 billion economic stimulus package as those that voted for his Republican rival, Sen. John McCain, a USA TODAY analysis of government disclosure and accounting records shows. That money includes aid to repair military bases, improve public housing and help students pay for college.

The reports show the 872 counties that supported Obama received about $69 per person, on average. The 2,234 that supported McCain received about $34.

Now for the real zinger…

Unemployment in June remained approximately 20 percent higher in states won by President Obama in last fall’s election than in states won by Republican candidate John McCain, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data released Friday.

Meanwhile national opinion polls are continuing to show Obama’s approval ratings are dropping.

According to the table below, the unemployment rate in June for states voting for Obama averaged 9.34 percent, compared to 7.91 percent in states that voted for the Republican candidate, Sen. John McCain of Arizona.

How ya likin that change?

 

So, the money does go to places that supported the messiah, and the result?  That’s pretty obvious.  Now, the libs will say that “they money hasn’t gotten out yet!”  My response would be that the messiah himself said that the porkulus was for projects that were “shovel ready.”  Well, what happened to the shovels?  What happened to the hundreds of thousands of jobs that were promised?  After all, the thing JUST HAD TO BE PASSED FREAKIN IMMEDIATELY to keep unemployment below 9%!   The libs have put themselves into a bind  to explain away the failure, because to explain away the fail, they have to point out that the messiah lied.  It’s fun!

Porkulus Fraud: More Funds Going to Places That Do Not

Exist

So, we know that the Porkulus would most definitely prevent unemployment from going over 8%.  We also know at this point that the Porkulus funds, as predicted, went to overwhelmingly Democratic districts (we said all along that it was going to go towards paying back supporters).  We also found out that the numbers of “jobs saved or created” were bogus, and that some places were counting pay raises for existing employees as jobs created.  One place even claimed to have created more jobs than their total number of employees!

Then, an even more serious flaw was found.  Billions of dollars in Porkulus money went to Congressional districts that do not exist.  The government downplayed it, the MSM glossed it over, and all was well…right?  Well, not so much.  One of the websites that helped point out some of the previous corruption with the Porkulus is now reporting that funding went to zip codes that do not exist.  Here are some excerpts from their article.

First it was phantom Congressional districts. Now it’s phantom zip codes.

Last month, we reported on federal stimulus money credited with creating jobs in nonexistent New Mexico Congressional districts. Further examination of the most recent report on the recipients and uses of New Mexico’s share of the $787 billion stimulus shows jobs created and money going to zip codes that do not exist.

New Mexico Watchdog broke what became a national news story, and fodder for Jon Stewart and Steve Colbert. The website launched by the Obama Administration to track the destinations of billions of dollars of stimulus funds under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act showed billions going to nonexistent Congressional districts. The website, recovery.gov, reported $26.5 million going to ten New Mexico Congressional districts that do not exist. Those millions were credited with creating 61.5 jobs. Spadework by our Watchdog counterparts in other states showed a total of $6.4 billion reported as being allocated to 440 nonexistent, or “phantom,” Congressional districts.

So, 26.5 million is credited with creating 61.5 jobs?  Simple math tells us that government spent $430,894.30 per job.  Now, I don’t know wages and cost of living in Oz, Wonderland, or Shangri-La, but it is apparently quite expensive to hire folks there.  Or, are some Democratic operatives or groups sitting on a boatload of government money?  Who knows?  Maybe the yellow brick road needed repaving?

The agency charged with tracking the stimulus funds, the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, attempted to eliminate this embarrassment by lumping all the billions reported going to nonexistent Congressional districts into a new category called the “unassigned” Congressional district.

Translation: “Erm, we don’t know where it is, or who got it.  Actually, we do, but we’re not going to tell you.  We’ll just change the category so it doesn’t look so bad.”

Closer examination of the latest recovery.gov report for New Mexico shows hundreds of thousands of dollars sent to and credited with creating jobs in zip codes that do not exist in New Mexico or anywhere else. Moreover, funds reported as being spent in New Mexico were given zip codes corresponding to areas in Washington and Oregon.

The recovery.gov site reports that $373,874 was spent in zip code 97052. Unfortunately, this expenditure created zip jobs. But $36,218 was credited with creating 5 jobs in zip code 87258. A cool hundred grand went into zip code 86705, but didn’t result in even one person finding work.

None of these zip codes exist in New Mexico, or anywhere else, for that matter.

The recovery.gov report also credits New Mexico with $131,139, though the zip codes receiving these funds (but creating no jobs) are in fact located in DuPont, Washington, Richland, Washington, and Gales Creek, Oregon.

These errors were found by checking the zip codes reported at recovery.gov against the United States Postal Service’s on-line zip code locator. Coming on top of our discovery of millions of dollars reportedly going to ten phantom New Mexico Congressional Districts, this latest discovery confirms that the data released by the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, at least for New Mexico, contains serious errors. All told, we have found over $27 million dollars that has been reported as going to either nonexistent Congressional districts or nonexistent zip codes.

So, again the government has wasted billions, and they can’t even say where it went, not will they even state that they are concerned!

The next quarterly report tracking stimulus funds, and reporting jobs created or saved by expenditure of those funds, is scheduled to be posted by the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board on January 30, 2010. The reports are docketed for quarterly releases. The discovery of errors, raising questions about the integrity and accuracy of the data, have occurred with the release of every report.

Update West Virginia Watchdog’s Steve Allen Adams reports $28 million in stimulus funds going to what he has discovered are nonexistent zip codes.

When Pigs Fly!

You have to admit that you just need something to hope for in these times. As reported by Susan Ferrechio in the Washington Examiner:

The $787 billion stimulus bill was passed in February and was promised as a job saver and economy booster. Here is where some of the money went:
– $300,000 for a GPS-equipped helicopter to hunt for radioactive rabbit droppings at the Hanford nuclear reservation in Washington state.
– $30 million for a spring training baseball complex for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies.
– $11 million for Microsoft to build a bridge connecting its two headquarter campuses in Redmond, Wash., which are separated by a highway.
– $430,000 to repair a bridge in Iowa County, Wis., that carries 10 or fewer cars per day.
– $800,000 for the John Murtha Airport in Johnstown, Pa., serving about 20 passengers per day, to build a backup runway.
– $219,000 for Syracuse University to study the sex lives of freshmen women.
– $2.3 million for the U.S. Forest Service to rear large numbers of arthropods, including the Asian longhorned beetle, the nun moth and the woolly adelgid.
– $3.4 million for a 13-foot tunnel for turtles and other wildlife attempting to cross U.S. 27 in Lake Jackson, Fla.
– $1.15 million to install a guardrail for a persistently dry lake bed in Guymon, Okla.
– $9.38 million to renovate a century-old train depot in Lancaster County, Pa., that has not been used for three decades.
– $2.5 million in stimulus checks sent to the deceased.
– $6 million for a snow-making facility in Duluth, Minn.
– $173,834 to weatherize eight pickup trucks in Madison County, Ill.
– $20,000 for a fish sperm freezer at the Gavins Point National Fish Hatchery in South Dakota.
– $380,000 to spay and neuter pets in Wichita, Kan.
– $300 apiece for thousands of signs at road construction sites across the country announcing that the projects are funded by stimulus money.
– $1.5 million for a fence to block would-be jumpers from leaping off the All-American Bridge in Akron, Ohio.
– $1 million to study the health effects of environmentally friendly public housing on 300 people in Chicago.
– $356,000 for Indiana University to study childhood comprehension of foreign accents compared with native speech.
– $983,952 for street beautification in Ann Arbor, Mich., including decorative lighting, trees, benches and bike paths.
– $148,438 for Washington State University to analyze the use of marijuana in conjunction with medications like morphine.
– $462,000 to purchase 22 concrete toilets for use in the Mark Twain National Forest in Missouri
– $3.1 million to transform a canal barge into a floating museum that will travel the Erie Canal in New York state.
– $1.3 million on government arts jobs in Maine, including $30,000 for basket makers, $20,000 for storytelling and $12,500 for a music festival.
– $71,000 for a hybrid car to be used by student drivers in Colchester, Vt., as well as a plug-in hybrid for town workers decked out with a sign touting the vehicle’s energy efficiency.
– $1 million for Portland, Ore., to replace 100 aging bike lockers and build a garage that would house 250 bicycles.

With all this pork it’s clear why we see flying pigs!

CBO Indicates Porkulus Outspent Iraq War

According to the Congressional Budget Office, all eight years of the Iraq war created a very big bill.  However, it was dwarfed by the Porkulus.  You know, that almost-trillion dollar bailout for liberal allies, with some make work programs sprinkled in, like turtle tunnels.  For the wrap-up of Porkulus vs. Iraq war, check this out from FOX.

As President Obama prepares to tie a bow on U.S. combat operations in Iraq, Congressional Budget Office numbers show that the total cost of the eight-year war was less than the stimulus bill passed by the Democratic-led Congress in 2009.

According to CBO numbers in its Budget and Economic Outlook published this month, the cost of Operation Iraqi Freedom was $709 billion for military and related activities, including training of Iraqi forces and diplomatic operations.

The projected cost of the stimulus, which passed in February 2009, and is expected to have a shelf life of two years, was $862 billion.

The U.S. deficit for fiscal year 2010 is expected to be $1.3 trillion, according to CBO. That compares to a 2007 deficit of $160.7 billion and a 2008 deficit of $458.6 billion, according to data provided by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

 

Remember all of the Democratic complaints about the war spending?

Remember all of the Democratic complaints about Bush’s spending?

Back to the present…

So then, are we ready for another spin in the Keynesian tilt-a-whirl?  It spins around really fast, but when it’s done, you might be a bit dizzy, but nothing really changes-except the fact that your share of the national debt has increased.  Nothing will be improved, and money will evaporate into nowhere by the billions.   The regressives will say that jobs were “saved or created,” but just like the last time around, there will be no change in unemployment, and if there are jobs created, they will last only as long as the government funding.  Unlike a real business that grows and expands, government grows and devours, leaving us all worse off.  It happened in the New Deal, it happened in the original Porkulus, and it will happen again.  Regressive plans leave out one important ingredient-reality.  Unfortunately for us all, the regressives ignore reality as a matter of course, so we can always expect these kind of programs, renamed and repacked, to be repeatedly peddled, no matter how many times they fail.

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