“Senator Ludlam welcomes Tony Abbott to WA…” [#geekgirl]
ACT Greens put an end to cage egg production after almost 20 years [#geekgirl]
[From a press release from The Greens] ‘After 18 years and seven bills, the ACT Greens have finally won the battle to ban cage egg production and sow stalls in the ACT, said ACT Greens Member for Molonglo, Shane Rattenbury.
“In 1996, the ACT Greens presented their first bill in the ACT Legislative Assembly to outlaw the production and sale of battery cage eggs. I am so proud that today, our 7th bill presented to the Assembly on these important issues has passed and will outlaw these inhumane and outdated farming practices,” said Mr Rattenbury.
“The Animal Welfare (Factory Farming) Bill will ban battery cages for egg production and the use of sow stalls and gestation crates for pigs, introducing a maximum penalty on conviction of 50 units ($7,000 for an individual or $35,000 for a corporation).
“Battery cage farming places laying hens in horrific conditions. It is widely recognised that hens kept in battery cage systems suffer chronically, unable to exhibit usual chicken behaviour such as flapping their wings or dust bathing.
“The Bill also prohibits the removal or trimming of hens’ beaks, a common practice in the factory farming industry where the hen’s beak is removed with a hot blade or laser. Not only is this process painful and inhumane, but it can also lead to other health complications which make it painful for the bird to eat.
“A growing number of public campaigns and a high level of recent media attention have exposed the inhumane practices of factory farming. It is clear that community awareness is increasing and public expectations are growing for higher standards of food production.
“This bill represents a growing movement in the community, as consumers are better informed and able to make more humane choices when purchasing animal produce. This is reflected even in our supermarket chains, with a number now stocking free range meats and phasing out the sale of battery cage eggs.
Animals Australia Campaign Director, Lyn White, expressed her support on the bill “Animals Australia applauds the ACT Government’s landmark move to prohibit some of the cruellest farming practices which see millions of animals around Australia severely confined and denied any quality of life, purely for commercial reasons. This legislation reflects community expectations for the treatment of animals and sets a significant precedent for other states to follow.”
Local produce farmer, Martyn Noakes from Bredbo Valley View Farm also welcomed the bill. “Prohibiting sow stalls within the ACT will have far reaching beneficial effects on the welfare of pigs beyond the ACTs borders; there is no need for sow stalls, caged birds or feed lots. This legislation is a step forward in changing the way we all think about the way all our food is produced.”’
A Boy and His Dog [#geekgirl]
“The 1,000 Drones Project: an interview with Joseph DeLappe” [#geekgirl]
“Marc Garrett: Could you tell us why you felt it was necessary to do this project even though there is already much media attention out there relating to the use of drones in domestic, military and commercial culture?
Joseph DeLappe: There has indeed been much media attention surrounding the use of militarized drones as a part of US foreign policy. Our drone policies have received much attention yet, as with the coverage of civilian casualties from the Iraq war, the actual human costs of our drone strikes remains rather illusive. Through the work I am doing regarding drones that specifically focuses on memorializing civilian deaths I hope to actualize the estimates of civilian deaths and to call into question the moral issues surrounding such remote killings. You might say that drones have struck a nerve with me. There is something different about drones. They seem to perfectly combine aspects of our worst fantasies of digital technologies, interactivity, computer gaming and war. One might consider them a bit of a “gateway” weapon (the drug reference is of course intentional here). I suspect we have indeed opened a Pandora’s box leading to the further utilization of remote and robotized weaponry that will make our current drone usage seem quaint.”
I Am Not Lost! [#geekgirl]
Got to love Canada, someone is placing these all over Ottawa, as the temp. is dropping.. pic.twitter.com/KxXbZxCcQI
— Louise Botha Artist (@lbpaints) January 21, 2014
“A bailout of the people by the people…” [#geekgirl]
“Rolling Jubilee is a Strike Debt project that buys debt for pennies on the dollar, but instead of collecting it, abolishes it. Together we can liberate debtors at random through a campaign of mutual support, good will, and collective refusal. Debt resistance is just the beginning. Join us as we imagine and create a new world based on the common good, not Wall Street profits.”
Pay It Forward [#geekgirl]
[From The New York Times] “Whereas paying it forward in drive-throughs occurred maybe once or twice a year a decade ago, now fast-food operators said it might happen several times a day.
“This is an example of goodness gone viral,” said Ms. Ryan, who since the publication of “Pay It Forward” has become somewhat of a clearinghouse for random acts of kindness. “People bring me their pay-it-forward stories, and I’ve been hearing about the drive-through phenomenon a lot lately.”
Perhaps the largest outbreak of drive-through generosity occurred last December at a Tim Hortons in Winnipeg, Manitoba, when 228 consecutive cars paid it forward. A string of 67 cars paid it forward in April at a Chick-fil-A in Houston. And then a Heav’nly Donuts location in Amesbury, Mass., had a good-will train of 55 cars last July.
Serial pay-it-forward incidents involving between 4 and 24 cars have been reported at Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Starbucks, Del Taco, Taco Bell, KFC and Dunkin’ Donuts locations in Maryland, Florida, California, Texas, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, Georgia, Alabama, North Dakota, Michigan, North Carolina and Washington.
More typically, though, it’s one customer acting alone and perhaps routinely. “We have a lady who always pays it forward in the drive-through, every day,” said Aaron Quinton, co-owner of Old School Bagel Cafe, in Tulsa, Okla. “I point at the person behind and she just nods.”
The anonymity of the drive-through makes it especially easy to pay it forward because it dispenses with any awkwardness and suspicion about motives. The payer pulls away before the next car pulls up and discovers a gift that is impossible to refuse.
“If you paid for someone inside a restaurant, they would see you,” said Jessica Kelishes, a marketing representative for an auto parts distributor, who pays it forward at Del Taco, McDonald’s and Starbucks drive-throughs in Banning, Calif. “I just do it out of kindness rather than for recognition.” She said her kindness stemmed from feeling blessed and wanting to share her good fortune. But others have told drive-through cashiers they wanted to pay it forward in gratitude to drivers who waved their car ahead of them in line or after noticing in the rearview mirror a woman weeping into her steering wheel, and wanting to make her smile. Cancer survivors have done it in appreciation of life, and new parents have done it to celebrate their baby.
But more often there is an expressed desire to do something good at a time when so much else in the world seems so dishearteningly bad. It’s a stark contrast, and perhaps a backlash, to the seemingly unremitting reports of unkindness in the news — politicians shutting down the government, N.S.A. spying, teenage suicides resulting from cyber-bullying, vicious slayings at a mall in Kenya, gas attacks in Syria.
“It’s about giving, and letting people see not everybody is bad, and there are nice people out there and maybe we can turn it around,” said Connie Herring, an optical technician in St. Pauls, N.C., who pays it forward at drive-throughs at least once a week.”
“Sustainable Livestock Production is Possible…” [#geekgirl]
[From a University of Cambridge Report] ‘New research advocates use of pastures with shrubs and trees as it is more sustainable, improving animal welfare and increasing biodiversity…
Consumers are increasingly demanding higher standards for how their meat is sourced, with animal welfare and the impact on the environment factoring in many purchases. Unfortunately, many widely-used livestock production methods are currently unsustainable. However, new research out today from the University of Cambridge has identified what may be the future of sustainable livestock production: silvopastoral systems which include shrubs and trees with edible leaves or fruits as well as herbage.
Professor Donald Broom, from the University of Cambridge, who led the research said: “Consumers are now demanding more sustainable and ethically sourced food, including production without negative impacts on animal welfare, the environment and the livelihood of poor producers. Silvopastoral systems address all of these concerns with the added benefit of increased production in the long term.”’
The Rescue [#geekgirl]
The New #Climate Council: A Message from Tim Flannery [#geekgirl]
[So much yayness: take that, Schmabbott!] “Australians deserve independent information about climate change, from the experts. We’ve decided that some things are too important to be dictated by the changing winds of politics — so we’re continuing our work as a new, independent group: the climate council.”