They're trying to take away another freedom.

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Postby Shapley » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:14 pm

Right now, the slaughterhouses pay for health inspections of the horses. I'm not sure how extensive the inspections are, since they do not require USDA certificaiton, I assume they are less. I'm sure the EU has additional proceedures that must be performed either before slaughter or during importation, which presumably is paid for by the EU or the consumer. I've no qualms with that, either. I just think any food produced in the U.S. and marketed for human consumption needs to be inspected and certified to be safe by a minimum U.S. standard plus whatever additional standards the receiving country may impose.

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Postby piqaboo » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:58 pm

So long as its self financing. Unlike preparing wilderness for paper-pulp logging...
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Postby barfle » Tue Sep 12, 2006 7:42 am

Shapley wrote:I concur. This ain't worth goin' to war over.

I'm reminded of the old story that goes "First they came for the Jews, but since I wasn't a Jew, I didn't care."

While I'm not a consumer of horse meat (mostly because of lack of opportunity), the point isn't horses, it's your right to eat something that has no observable detriments, and is probably healthier for you than beef.

And if the ASPCA thinks this is a good idea, I will be in contact with them. I don't advocate cruelty, but this bill is throwing the baby out with the bathwater. If they want to eliminate cruelty in slaughter, they should go after cruelty in slaughter, not just eliminating slaughter for human consupmtion. That's ridiculous.
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Postby Shapley » Tue Sep 12, 2006 8:01 am

Barfle,

I mean it's not worth going to war with Nicole Marie over. I agree it's a bad piece of legislation that will probably do nothing to end the slaughter, for reasons I've already pointed out in my posts. We don't raise horses for meat in America - at least not on a large scale. No doubt there are many countries where they could be raised cheaper than here if someone wanted to get into the horses-for-food business. We do sell the meat from horses that are slaughtered - but they are horses that are bred for other purposes - racing, riding, pulling surreys - but are either too old or otherwise unsuited for the purpose so they are scheduled to be 'put down', and the slaughterhouses buy them for the meat, no doubt completing with other facilities that seek to buy them for glue, violin strings, baseballs, dog food, or whatever. As I've said, all this does is removes one market for the by-product or after-product.

By all means write your Congressman. But don't be surprised if he/she doesn't agree with you since few of them will understand the bill, and will assume you are in favour of 'killing horses for meat'. That's about as far as most of them will read into it.

V/R
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Postby Catmando » Tue Sep 12, 2006 8:08 am

Shapley wrote:Barfle,

I mean it's not worth going to war with Nicole Marie over. I agree it's a bad piece of legislation that will probably do nothing to end the slaughter, for reasons I've already pointed out in my posts. We don't raise horses for meat in America - at least not on a large scale. No doubt there are many countries where they could be raised cheaper than here if someone wanted to get into the horses-for-food business. We do sell the meat from horses that are slaughtered - but they are horses that are bred for other purposes - racing, riding, pulling surreys - but are either too old or otherwise unsuited for the purpose so they are scheduled to be 'put down', and the slaughterhouses buy them for the meat, no doubt completing with other facilities that seek to buy them for glue, violin strings, baseballs, dog food, or whatever. As I've said, all this does is removes one market for the by-product or after-product.

By all means write your Congressman. But don't be surprised if he/she doesn't agree with you since few of them will understand the bill, and will assume you are in favour of 'killing horses for meat'. That's about as far as most of them will read into it.

V/R
Shapley


Are there alternative sources of materials to make violin strings?

I'm shocked that they haven't yet found some sort of safe lethal injection that would be more humane in putting down a horse, cattle, pork etc.
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Postby Shapley » Tue Sep 12, 2006 8:27 am

Lethal injection would infect the meat with whatever chemicals are used in the process, rendering it unfit for consumption.

Catgut, which is made for intestinal material from livestock (not cats) is used for the production of violin strings, tennis racquet strings, and medical sutures, although synthetic replacements are available.

Keep in mind that the animals are not usually killed for the material, but that the material is available because of the killing of the animals. The animals are killed for other purposes - in the case of horses it usually due to their being unfit for productive use and too expensive to keep alive.

Wild horses breed rapidly, and the BLM strives to keep them withing manageable herds, so thousands of unwanted and unneeded horses are slaughtered every few years. The 'adopt-a-wild-horse' program has reduced the slaughter somewhat, but only for those that can find a home, the rest still get sent to slaughter. The by-products are then simply sold where they are usually mixed into the by-products from cattle, sheep, pigs, etc., for the production of glue, feed, fertilizer, or whatever commercial products can be produced from them.

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Postby barfle » Tue Sep 12, 2006 2:06 pm

Again, I am not a consumer of horse meat, although I have no moral aversion to it (like I have for veal, for example). If a horse is slaughtered because it has outlived its commercial usefulness, I would suspect that its meat would be too tough for much but burgers. But again, I may well have just enough knowledge to show how incredibly ignorant on the topic I am.

I remember my dad telling me that a slaughterhouse used everything from the pig except the squeal. There is very little waste from most slaughterhouses, and there are people trying to make use of the rest of it as well.
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Postby DavidS » Tue Sep 12, 2006 2:30 pm

What's so difficult about setting out and enforcing painless slaughtering techniques suitable for each species of creatures, and putting into place procedures and criteria for ensuring the meat is fit for human consumption?
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Postby barfle » Tue Sep 12, 2006 5:22 pm

DavidS wrote:What's so difficult about setting out and enforcing painless slaughtering techniques suitable for each species of creatures, and putting into place procedures and criteria for ensuring the meat is fit for human consumption?


Apparently some people think it's easier to just outlaw the whole thing. Which is not what makes me proud to be an American. :rant:
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Postby Shapley » Tue Sep 12, 2006 8:47 pm

David,

It's not that complex - we do it for chickens, cattle, pigs, sheep, etc.

Some people have it in their minds that horses should not be eaten. Therefore, they enact (through their representatives) legislation designed to make the sale of horse meat difficult and expensive. The intent supposedly is to protect the horses, but it ignores the fact that the horses will probably be put down anyway, since they have no other commercial value.

Barfle,

RE:
If a horse is slaughtered because it has outlived its commercial usefulness, I would suspect that its meat would be too tough for much but burgers.


Not being a horse connosieur, I can't say really say for sure. But I suspect that 'old' horses do not comprise the bulk of those sent to the slaughterhouse. Many horses are bred for racing and other duties, of which only a few prove themselves to be marketable. I would expect that a determination of their suitability to the purpose would be made fairly early in life, and the rest are sold off for other purposes, slaughtering being one of them. Similarly, many racing and other horses probably have a fairly young retirement age, so those that find their way to slaughter are probably still quite fresh.

Horses bred for trail riding and other domestic purposes are often too tempermental for public use, so they find themselves sent away as well. I've already mentioned the wild horses sent off by the BLM. No doubt young horses make up the bulk of those, as well. If you want to thin the herd, the best way is to reduce the number of breeding-age mares, not old stallions.

V/R
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Postby barfle » Tue Sep 12, 2006 10:06 pm

I'm also ignorant of the horse trade. I've ridden a few, found them to be disagreeable, and never looked back.

I can imagine you are right about those horses bred for a purpose they turned out to be unsuitable for. My knowledge of horse ownership was pretty much garnered from people who made a living from having horses (very old farmers when I was a youngster), and who couldn't afford to have a horse that didn't work - so they made it work. Not that they were cruel to the animals, but once the horses got old, I would guess their meat would have been pretty tough.

I really don't know what my great grandfather did with a dead horse, but I suspect he called a rendering service and got a couple of 1930s dollars for it.
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Postby DavidS » Wed Sep 13, 2006 1:12 am

Well, I'll tell you all frankly: I had horse riding lessons many years ago, and I found it difficult to handle their smell when alive, so that horse meat is not something I could consume (as distinct from Archie Bunker, unknowingly).
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Postby Haggis@wk » Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:41 am

Muslims urged to buy influence in world media


” RIYADH (Reuters) - Muslim tycoons should buy stakes in global media outlets to help change anti-Muslim attitudes around the world, ministers from Islamic countries heard at a conference in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday.

Information ministers and officials meeting under the auspices of the 57-nation Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), the world’s largest Islamic body, said Islam faced vilification after the September 11 attacks, when 19 Arabs killed nearly 3,000 people in U.S. cities in 2001.

“Muslim investors must invest in the large media institutions of the world, which generally make considerable profits, so that they have the ability to affect their policies via their administrative boards,” OIC chief Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu told the gathering in the Saudi city of Jeddah.

“This would benefit in terms of correcting the image of Islam worldwide,” he said, calling on Muslim countries to set up more channels in widely-spoken foreign languages. ...

“The fierce attack on Islam in the five years since the September 11 attacks has forced us into a defensive position on our faith and understanding of our tolerant religion,” Egyptian Information Minister Anas el-Feki said in a speech.

“Now more than ever we need a new Islamic media message that reaches all parts of the world,” Feki said, citing Israel’s recent 34-day war in Lebanon as one issue where Muslims needed to make their views and influence felt.”


Since they apparently already control the editorial boards of the NYT, WaPo, LAT and TIME I would be sweating it if I worked for the WSJ or the Washington Times.

Oh, and the BBC’s safe as well…..
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Postby DavidS » Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:58 am

Haggis@wk wrote:Muslims urged to buy influence in world media


” RIYADH (Reuters) - Muslim tycoons should buy stakes in global media outlets to help change anti-Muslim attitudes around the world, ministers from Islamic countries heard at a conference in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday.

Information ministers and officials meeting under the auspices of the 57-nation Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), the world’s largest Islamic body, said Islam faced vilification after the September 11 attacks, when 19 Arabs killed nearly 3,000 people in U.S. cities in 2001.

“Muslim investors must invest in the large media institutions of the world, which generally make considerable profits, so that they have the ability to affect their policies via their administrative boards,” OIC chief Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu told the gathering in the Saudi city of Jeddah.

“This would benefit in terms of correcting the image of Islam worldwide,” he said, calling on Muslim countries to set up more channels in widely-spoken foreign languages. ...

“The fierce attack on Islam in the five years since the September 11 attacks has forced us into a defensive position on our faith and understanding of our tolerant religion,” Egyptian Information Minister Anas el-Feki said in a speech.

“Now more than ever we need a new Islamic media message that reaches all parts of the world,” Feki said, citing Israel’s recent 34-day war in Lebanon as one issue where Muslims needed to make their views and influence felt.”

Actually, I don't get it: Doesn't owning Harrods give them some influence?
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Postby jamiebk » Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:59 am

The fierce attack on Islam in the five years since the September 11 attacks has forced us into a defensive position on our faith and understanding of our tolerant religion,” Egyptian Information Minister Anas el-Feki said in a speech.
#################
If Islam is so tolerant and wants to improve its image, why isn't Islam doing more to quell the radical's in their midst who carry on terrorist activities in their name?
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Postby Nicole Marie » Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:06 am

As a musician... "cat gut" strings are useless. At one point in music they had the sound people wanted but in today’s orchestras and with the new technology used to build todyas strings the cat guts have phased out. (Spiral core style strings are really what performers want.)

I also do not use horse hair on my bows. Bow re-hairing companies do offer synthetic materials. The technology behind the synthetics is so good and produces (to my ear) a better sound quality. Plus it's cheaper.
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Postby DavidS » Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:35 am

Right, and I'm sure horses and fish aren't part of the ingredients of "super glue" and non-toxic, plastic "school glue".
I also believe that any acoustic effects cat gut and horse hair may have achieved are now easily available by synthetic, electronic, or software means.
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Postby DavidS » Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:43 am

jamiebk wrote:The fierce attack on Islam in the five years since the September 11 attacks has forced us into a defensive position on our faith and understanding of our tolerant religion,” Egyptian Information Minister Anas el-Feki said in a speech.
#################
If Islam is so tolerant and wants to improve its image, why isn't Islam doing more to quell the radical's in their midst who carry on terrorist activities in their name?


Maybe the reply to that is for the civilised world to lay greater publicity stress on the fact that the quarrel is not with Islam, but with brain-poisoning, fanaticism, bigotry, terrorism - especially that targeting civilians, blind hatred, and extremism.
Last edited by DavidS on Wed Sep 13, 2006 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby piqaboo » Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:59 am

Nicole's link suggests the slaughterhouses attend many auctions of all kinds of horses, and buy any that fall under a certain $/lb estimate of ~ $600. That's quite a few horses. I've had 4 in my life, and we've never paid more than $200 for a one of them.

I'd feel better about "tolerant islam" if hezbollah and hamas werent parts of official gov'ts.
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Postby Haggis@wk » Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:25 am

Libel tourism

” AN IMPORTANT question will be argued tomorrow before the federal Court of Appeals in Manhattan: should American journalists who write about controversial issues be subjected to legal intimidation from abroad? More precisely, will American courts halt the growing practice of “libel tourism” whereby wealthy foreigners sue American writers and publishers in England, despite little chance of enforcing the judgment in this country?…

Rather than confront bin Mahfouz on England’s libel-friendly turf, Ehrenfeld sued him in a New York federal court seeking a declaration that his English judgment is unenforceable in the United States as repugnant to the First Amendment.

The English judgment has impaired her ability to find publishers for her other work. Remarkably, the district court dismissed her case, ruling in effect that Ehrenfeld must await legal action in the United States by bin Mahfouz to enforce the English judgment before raising her First Amendment defense. ...

Writers are now subject to intimidation by libel tourists. Little wonder that the American Society of Newspaper Editors, the Association of American Publishers, and 14 other media groups have filed a “friend of the court” brief to support Ehrenfeld’s quest to raise her First Amendment defense now. Until she is able to do so, she will have problems finding American publishers willing to risk publishing her research and writing.”



I missed this last week. The idea that a U.S. Federal Court could actually uphold a foreign law would have been ludicrous a few years ago…now, I’m not so sure.

Her book was quite revealing and I highly recommend it. Her book revealed connections between Saudi billionaire Sheik Khalid Salim a bin Mahfouz and his sons, and al Qaeda funding. Despite the fact he lives in Saudi Arabia, and that Ehrenfeld's book was published in the United States and not even on sale in Great Britain, the Sheik decided to become what is known as a "libel tourist" and sued Ehrenfeld in the UK—notoriously plaintiff friendly—for defamation and libel.

It’s nothing less than an end run to silence free speech and intimidate researchers and authors from printing reports and books that show how terrorism and radical Islam is being spread in the U.S.

You’d think that the First Amendment would moot any of this but you’d be wrong, at least the judges seem to think there is some merit to the suit

” One judge on the three-judge panel yesterday expressed reservations about the British court order. Still the questions from the judges of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals suggested that they had significant doubts that the court has jurisdiction to toss out the British court's judgment in the libel case.


Emphasis added.

Judges like this drive me crazy. A suit was decided in an English court only because it had no chance of success in an American court and the judge appear reluctant to throw it out?

This is scary in more ways than one.
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