Daily Archives: December 21, 2013

BBC HARDtalk – Glenn Greenwald – Journalist (28/11/13)

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Choosing the Year’s Best Pictures: 2013 Photo Contest

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Markey on Clean Energy Tax Extenders for Wind, Solar Energy Efficiency

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Untold History of United States – Bush & Obama: Age of Terror (Subtitulado Español)

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NASA | Earthrise: The 45th Anniversary

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Out of Oil Apocalypse

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9/11 – Mike Ruppert – The Truth And Lies Of 911

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CORPORATE FASCISM: The Destruction of America’s Middle Class

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6 Crimes Against Nature Perpetrated By the Food Industry

http://www.alternet.org/food/6-crimes-against-nature-perpetrated-food-industry
By Martha Rosenberg

While many procedures on factory farms are cruel, breeding animals into mutants and violating mother/offspring bonds are truly crimes against nature.

December 19, 2013 | The horrors of factory farming are multifold. Treating animals like heads of lettuce—”forget it’s an animal” says one farming magazine—has created institutionalized ruthlessness toward animals, workers and the environment at the same time it harms humans who eat the products. Factory farming even damages the economy thanks to meat-related obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer, and greedy, short-sighted land-use policies.

While many procedures on factory farms are cruel, some practices like breeding animals into mutant-like parodies of their original species and violating mother/offspring bonds are truly crimes against nature.

1. Greed-Driven Mutilations

It is possible to practice animal husbandry in a way that an animal only has “one bad day” (the day the animal is slaughtered), but thanks to factory farming, which packs animals together over their own waste, they endure a lot of additional suffering.

Chickens are “debeaked” during their second week of life “to prevent cannibalism and feed wastage,” says an online guide for chicken growers—though the industry’s abusive battery egg cages, not the animals, are responsible for the “cannibalism.” Debeaking, partial or total removal of a bird’s beak with a hot knife or laser while it is fully conscious, causes “intense pain, shock and bleeding,” says veterinarian Nedim C. Buyukmihci, emeritus professor of veterinary medicine at the University of California.

A similar fate awaits pigs who respond to unnatural conditions by biting each others’ tails. The factory farm solution? Cut off their tails with a pliers and no painkiller—an institutionalized mutilation called tail docking.

Cows also have their tails docked for what factory farmers call “hygiene” and “milk quality” as well as their horn buds burned off with no painkillers. When video footage depicting both procedures at Willet Dairy in New York state aired on ABC’s Nightline there were calls for laws against the cavalier cruelty. Nor are debeaking, tail docking and horn bud burning factory farming’s only mutilations. Animals also endure dubbing, the removal of combs on birds, detoeing and declawing and mulesing—removal of a sheep’s hindquarter skin.

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Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120
Food-Matters http://Food-Matters.TV

BBC News – Neanderthals could speak like modern humans, study suggests

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-25465102
20 December 2013 Last updated at 11:06 ET
By Melissa Hogenboom Science reporter, BBC News

Neanderthals may have had complex language
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An analysis of a Neanderthal’s fossilised hyoid bone – a horseshoe-shaped structure in the neck – suggests the species had the ability to speak.

This has been suspected since the 1989 discovery of a Neanderthal hyoid that looks just like a modern human’s.

But now computer modelling of how it works has shown this bone was also used in a very similar way.

Writing in journal Plos One, scientists say its study is “highly suggestive” of complex speech in Neanderthals.

“If Neanderthals also had language then they were truly human, too” Prof Stephen Wroe University of New England, Armidale, NSW, Australia

The hyoid bone is crucial for speaking as it supports the root of the tongue. In non-human primates, it is not placed in the right position to vocalise like humans.

An international team of researchers analysed a fossil Neanderthal throat bone using 3D x-ray imaging and mechanical modelling.

This model allowed the group to see how the hyoid behaved in relation to the other surrounding bones.

Stephen Wroe, from the University of New England, Armidale, NSW, Australia, said: “We would argue that this is a very significant step forward. It shows that the Kebara 2 hyoid doesn’t just look like those of modern humans – it was used in a very similar way.”

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Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120