Saturday, April 19, 2014


Nothing like watching workers beat the hell out of veal calves.....

One of my dearest friends is the head investigator of these undercover operations.  Last week, she asked me a quiet question about veal calves, and I thought to myself, "oh god, that's the cruelty that's going to be exposed next."

I braced myself all week.  And here it is. Worse than I could've imagined.

Here we are in the 21st century and we're as disgraceful as ever.  Worse than ever.

Paul Shapiro in Winnipeg & my interviews with the press

We flew him up here for our "Take Back Manitoba From Factory Farming" event, for which we baked a zillion cookies and cupcakes and got hundreds of dollars in door prizes--from original art to veterinary packages.

Paul's talk was excellent, of course.  I said, "how do you get people to laugh like that? you are actually funny!"
He said, "nothing like animal cruelty upon which to base hilarity..."

He's super dead-pan.  It's enviable.

(My humor is the opposite of dead-pan.  My partner says I'm funny but in a "it's obvious you're trying" kind of way.)

I love talking to Paul, getting to hear his advice and the metaphors he uses for the battle.

I tell him I am often consumed by rage and sadness.  Just fucking furious at the lies and stupidity and desecration of all that matters.  And he responds all chill--all "you have to control your response."

I tell him I'm tracking all the fires--all the burnt-down hog barns which are all so goddamn suspicious and horrific--and how much those fires put the lie to "all farmers care about their animals, regardless of how big the operation"  (oh, that one is such a pile of b.s.).

And this where Paul's compassion pushes through his unruffled surface--where he says, "at least the fires bring death to the living hell of being in a gestation crate."

Anything to shorten the duration of the absolute hell of being confined in those traps.

I find that so fascinating--such a glimpse of the depths and depths of his commitment.


I did a lot of press interviews around the event.  I await one in particular--should be coming out soon. The reporter's sympathies obviously lie with the "livestock community."  She was trying to trip me up and justify all sorts of crap.  I was never more sure of being messed with in my entire life.  It was just so obvious.

In retrospect, I shouldn't have done the interview.  I imagine the article will spin me into looking like garbage... but, the silver lining is this: if and when it does, I can say "do not contact us again ever for any kind of statement, interview, etc."

Maybe I'm getting ahead of myself.

Anything to do with this system of confining animals--anything--makes me feel sick for days.  Even if it's a bake sale or an interview or a policy analyis.... I think of the animal at the center of it all, languishing in a goddamn cage, pregnant with the next animal to take her place.  Because somebody wants bacon or an Easter ham.


I want to quit.  But then my allies say, "they've won for sure then."

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Another hog barn fire. Six hundred animals died in flames.

SD Hutterite Colony loses 600 hogs in barn fire

SALEM, S.D. (AP) — A Hutterite colony in southeastern South Dakota is dealing with the loss of about 600 hogs in a weekend fire.
McCook County Emergency Manager Brad Stiefvater tells The Daily Republic newspaper that the animals died of smoke inhalation when a fire started in a hog barn at the Golden View Hutterite Colony on Saturday afternoon. He says embers from a nearby burn pit likely were sucked into a vent and started the fire in the ceiling of the 5,600-square-foot barn.
Stiefvater says some of the surviving hogs might die later if they develop complications from smoke inhalation.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Liquid manure from pork operations are filled with chemotherapeutics. From the Environmental Science Journal

Sewage sludge and liquid pig manure as possible sources of antibiotic resistant bacteria


Within the last decades, the environmental spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria has become a topic of concern. In this study, liquid pig manure (n=305) and sewage sludge (n=111) – used as agricultural fertilizers between 2002 and 2005 – were investigated for the presence of Escherichia coliEnterococcus faecalis andEnterococcus faecium. Bacteria were tested for their resistance against 40 chemotherapeutics including several “reserve drugs”. E. coli (n=613) from pig manure were at a significantly higher degree resistant to streptomycin, doxycycline, spectinomycin, cotrimoxazole, and chloramphenicol than E. coli (n=116) from sewage sludge. Enterococci (Ent. faecalisn=387, and Ent. faeciumn=183) from pig manure were significantly more often resistant to high levels of doxycycline, rifampicin, erythromycin, and streptomycin than Ent. faecalis (n=44) and Ent. faecium (n=125) from sewage sludge. Significant differences in enterococcal resistance were also seen for tylosin, chloramphenicol, gentamicin high level, fosfomycin, clindamicin, enrofloxacin, moxifloxacin, nitrofurantoin, and quinupristin/dalfopristin. By contrast, aminopenicillins were more effective in enterococci from pig manure, and mean MIC-values of piperacillin+tazobactam and third generation cefalosporines were significantly lower in E. coli from pig manure than in E. coli from sewage sludge. 13.4% (E. coli) to 25.3% (Ent. faecium) of pig manure isolates were high-level multiresistant to substances from more than three different classes of antimicrobial agents. In sewage sludge, high-level-multiresistance reached from 0% (Ent. faecalis) to 16% (Ent. faecium). High rates of (multi-) resistant bacteria in pig manure emphasize the need for a prudent – cautious – use of antibiotics in farm animals.


  • Liquid pig manure
  • Sewage sludge
  • Antimicrobial resistance
  • Multiresistance
  • Outpatients
Corresponding author contact information
Corresponding author: Fax: +49 8161 714516.
These authors contributed equally to the publication.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Maternity Pens

Maudlin anthropomorphism when it suits them.

The caged pregnant pig at the center of so much money and vitriol.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

veganelder: Images....

veganelder: Images....: This photo of the face of a donkey knocked me out. I saw this on facebook and was entranced...I did not research the origin of the imag...