Tsunami Destroyed Japanese Whaling Industry!!!!!!!

Tsunami destroyed Japan's whaling industry. 
An end to whaling!!!
AYUKAWAHAMA, Japan — At first glance, it seemed like just one more flattened building in a seaside town where a tsunami had leveled hundreds of homes. But survivors gathered at this one to stand and brood.
Ko Sasaki for The New York Times
Seiko Taira admired a can of whale meat that her daughter found in the wreckage. Whaling remains popular in Ayukawahama.
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    The New York Times
    Ayukawahama was close to the epicenter of Japan’s quake.
    They came to what had been the headquarters of Ayukawa Whaling, one of only a handful of companies left in Japan that still hunted large whales. Those who gathered on a chilly recent Thursday spoke as if the company’s destruction two weeks ago had robbed the town of its soul.
    “There is no Ayukawa without whaling,” said Hiroyuki Akimoto, 27, a fisherman and an occasional crewman on the whaling boats, referring to the town by its popular shorthand.
    Japan’s tsunami seems to have succeeded — where years of boycotts, protests and high-seas chases by Western environmentalists had failed — in knocking out a pillar of the nation’s whaling industry. Ayukawahama was one of only four communities in Japan that defiantly carried on whaling and eating whales as a part of the local culture, even as the rest of the nation lost interest in whale meat.
    So central is whaling to the local identity that many here see the fate of the town and the industry as inextricably linked.
    “This could be the final blow to whaling here,” said Makoto Takeda, a 70-year-old retired whaler. “So goes whaling, so goes the town.”
    The damage was particularly heavy here because Ayukawahama sits on the tip of a peninsula that was the closest land to the huge undersea earthquake 13 days ago. The resulting tsunami tore through the tiny fishing towns on the mountainous coastline, reducing Ayukawahama to an expanse of splintered wood and twisted cars. Three out of four homes were destroyed, forcing half of the town’s 1,400 residents into makeshift shelters.
    At the offices of Ayukawa Whaling, only a light green harpoon gun — which once proudly decorated the entrance — and an uprooted pine tree were left standing. Across a parking lot stood the skeletal frame of the factory where whale meat was processed. A beached fishing boat and crumpled fire truck lay on the raised platform where the whales were hoisted ashore to be butchered.
    The company’s three boats, which had been sucked out to sea, washed up miles down the coast with remarkably little damage. But they remain grounded there.
    Ayukawa Whaling’s chairman, Minoru Ito, said he was in the office when the earthquake struck, shattering windows and toppling furniture. He led the employees to higher ground.
    All 28 of them survived, he said, though he later had to lay them off. He said he fully intended to rebuild, hopefully in time for an autumn hunt off the northern island of Hokkaido, though he acknowledged the recovery might take more time. He said the most costly part would be getting the whaling ships back in the water, an undertaking that the company cannot afford without government help.
    Once the ships are ready, he wants to hire back the employees. However, he admitted that the waves might have scared some employees away, from both whaling and Ayukawahama.
    “If we can fix the ships, then we’re back in business,” said Mr. Ito, 74, whose father was also a whaler. “They should not be afraid, because another tsunami like that won’t come for another 100 years.”
    Other residents were similarly undaunted. Mr. Akimoto, the occasional whaler, who came with a friend to see the ruined company, said the town needed to resume whaling as soon as possible to lift its spirits.
    He said the year would be a sad one because the town would miss the April hunting season, during which coastal whalers like Ayukawa Whaling are allowed to take 50 minke whales under Japan’s controversial whaling program, which is ostensibly for research.
    Ayukawahama and the other three whaling communities — among them Taiji, made infamous by the movie “The Cove” — hunt only in coastal waters. Japan’s better-known whaling in the Antarctic is conducted by the government.
    Mr. Akimoto said April was usually the town’s most festive month, especially when large whales were brought ashore. He said he would miss that feeling this year.
    Added his friend, Tatsuya Sato, 20, “We are so hungry that if they brought a whale ashore now, the whole town would rush down to eat it.”

    Winograd's New Book

    All American Vegan

    March 23, 2011 by Nathan J. Winograd 
    I am pleased to announce that the distributor just gave my wife and I the official release date for our forthcoming book, All American Vegan. The news couldn’t have come at a better time. With the recent release of PETA’s annual killing statistics, we have once again watched the fear-mongering that follows regarding what some menacingly refer to as the “vegan” agenda. Were one to associate this “agenda” with the vision laid out by PETA, there would, indeed, be much to fear. For those who think, as PETA proclaims, that the goal is to end our relationship with companion animals and that killing animals is consistent with veganism, we share your concern. But, thankfully, that is not what it means to be vegan.
    For a moment, forget the labels. Forget the groups. And imagine a world where you continue to eat pizza and hamburgers, cakes and pies, milkshakes and ice creams. These foods look the same as what you eat now. They taste the same. They give you the nutrition you need. And you do not need to forsake the ease and convenience by which you get them. The only difference is that the ingredients that make up these foods are from plants, not animals, and no one is killed. Nothing changes, except no one dies. The slaughterhouses are closed. The factory farms are all closed. But there is an abundance of delicious things to eat. Is that really such a disturbing vision?
    Given the same taste, texture, look, and availability, given that the way you eat then will be indistinguishable from what you eat now, you would not miss the “old days” because you’ll have a readily available alternative. In fact, the means to achieve these foods is technologically possible today. Yet in many cases and for a variety of reasons, these foods are not being produced, nor are they widely available. All American Vegan uncovers why, as well as how we can overcome the obstacles that stand in the way of the production and widespread distribution of them.
    With over 90 delicious recipes, nearly 200 illustrations, lots of jokes, and no vegetables,All American Vegan is veganism for the rest of us. Available December 1, wherever books are sold.
    Learn more by clicking here.

    The County Butcher is Back

    Plague-carrying ground squirrels pose little risk of death to humans

    Claire2Dr. Claire Panosian Dunavan is an infectious disease specialist and a professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine. This op-ed ran originally on August 11 in the Los Angeles Daily News.
    You've got to admit: they're cute. Minutes ago, this thought hit me anew as another one shot past my window.
    California ground squirrels — whether hauling acorns, dancing across lawns, or simply racing down the street — are a goofy, high-octane species that normally make me smile.
    Except in 2010, that is. Last month — true to expert forecast (more about that later) — a ground squirrel in the Angeles National Forest tested positive for plague, one of mankind's deadliest blights.
    How plague entered SoCal squirrels is a story for another day. For now, suffice it to say, plague routinely simmers in the tribe. Once surveillance unearths a positive, however, things happen. Case in point: one day after the recent find, public health and U.S. Forestry officials promptly closed the Los Alamos campground.
    As I write this column, the park north of Pyramid Lake remains shuttered while public health staff continue testing, treating burrows with insecticide, and luring squirrels (with tortilla chips!) into dusting stations.
    The logic behind the last practice is simple. After coating themselves with chemicals, the Frito banditos go home and spread more pesticide among their friends and relations. This, in turn, kills fleas which might otherwise transfer Yersinia pestis — the deadly plague bacterium - into new hosts.
    Beginning to worry about that bite you picked up on your last hike? Feeling feverish? Have aches?
    OK, now for the good news. Despite periodic bursts of plague in Los Angeles County among squirrels and other rodents, since 1979, only four human cases have been diagnosed — none fatal. Plus, as a general rule, foothill fleas prefer animals over people. Our last sufferer never got bitten at all. Back in 2006, she fell ill after handling the carcass of a tainted rabbit from Kern County.
    (Fortunately, although plenty sick at the outset, the previously healthy woman recovered quickly thanks to aggressive antibiotics and hospital care.)
    But just because Los Angeles County hasn't had recent deaths doesn't mean modern plague can't kill. For proof, I called my ultimate source. Dr. Royce Johnson is a longtime infectious diseases specialist at Kern County Medical Center in Bakersfield. He's seen more human cases than anyone currently practicing in California.
    "I still remember four patients vividly," Johnson said when I asked about his earliest encounters. "The first was a Tehachapi resident who fell on hard times and spent a lot of time outdoors. When he finally reached us, he was covered with purple blotches and had florid pneumonia. Within eight hours, he was dead.
    "In fact, he was dead when I first saw him," my colleague added. "I just didn't know it yet."
    Johnson's next patient, who survived, displayed plague's classic hallmark: a grossly swollen, infected lymph node called a "bubo." She picked up her infection while trailer-camping.
    A third man who died of plague pneumonia had worked at a garbage sorting and recycling site. He probably inhaled the virulent germs while handling dead animals.
    A final casualty fell ill after his cat suffered a massive abscess; Johnson assumed the owner's infection started with a flea bite. (The cat, on the other hand, could have been bitten by an infected flea or eaten an infected rodent.)
    Johnson's last vignette launched me on a new train of thought.
    In this year of heightened hazard, could local cats and dogs contract plague, I wondered? To answer this question, I called Dr. Emily Beeler, one of L.A. County's public health veterinarians.
    "Sure," she replied. "But cats are classically at greater risk because of their predatory behavior."
    To put things in perspective: feline plague is rare around here, but, at the same time, according to Beeler, it can be missed. That's because fevers and abscesses (usually due to fights, not plague) are so common in cats. As a result, it takes a pretty dramatic illness for most vets to order special tests for plague.
    The silver lining?
    "Routine antibiotics may cure more cats than we know," Beeler said.
    The logical next step — if you don't already follow this time-honored advice — is to: 1) faithfully apply anti-flea treatments to pets; 2) leave pets behind when going on rustic picnics and vacations; 3) steer clear of burrows; and 4) never handle sick or dead rodents.
    Long pants and insect repellent are also recommended for humans in the wild. Feeding cute little beggars from your knapsack? Don't even think about it.
    Back to Otospermophilus beecheyi (OK, I admit I just looked that up — that's California ground squirrels to nonbiologists like you and me). The last word on them goes to Gail Van Gordon, Los Angeles County's chief of vector management. But first I'd like to thank her and her crew. They're the ones (appropriately gloved, garbed and sprayed, of course) on the front lines with the squirrels. And not just at Los Alamos campground, but high-risk spots throughout the County.
    Van Gordon wasn't surprised, as it turns out, by 2010's index animal. After this year's heavy rain and prolonged spring, she told me, she and her staff saw "way too many burrows." It's a simple equation we should all remember. More rain equals more food equals more squirrels (possibly) carrying plague

    From ADL on Barnette and our shelters

    show details 1:02 PM (47 minutes ago)
    We know the below is a long Action Alert, but it's more than worth the read! It's one of the most informative and educational postings we've put together directly from our inside sources. 
    FINALLY, after a seven year campaign to STOP THE KILLING in our six city shelters, for the first time, sources are telling ADL-LA that Brenda Barnette (who is the city's top leader in the protection and welfare of ALL the animals in our city) is not only leading the shelters in a new and positive direction but . . .  (and this is amazing to us here at ADL-LA,) the LAAS Commission is kicking ass for the animals! Apparently the commission is working as a team with Brenda Barnette and the DFO's to put words into ACTION for the animals. Creative ideas that use to sit around for months (even years) and end up never getting done because of the red tape of city beauracracy and a lazy LAAS commission and GM, are now moving forward to SAVE ANIMALS' LIVES! 
    So our HERO of the week is president of the LAAS Commission Melanie Ramsayer!  We may not know you but from what we hear. . . . .YOU GO GIRL!
    Several independent sources have told us, two in administration, one city employee who attends the commission meetings and another who listens to all the meetings recorded, that under the direction of LAAS commission president Melanie Ramsayer, the commissioners have transformed themselves into passionate and enthusiastic "doers" for the animals with great  ideas, willing to establish creative ideas and create policy that SAVES ANIMALS' LIVES! 
    Remember the "bad ol' days" when ADL-LA, along with the entire humane community, knew that because of such a weak and lazy LAAS commission, that nothing positive was being done for the animals? The ONLY one who luckily has been sitting on the commission consistently 
    and who has a great deal of knowledge not only regarding animal behavior but on commission policy is Kathy Riordan. But most of her colleagues over the past seven years have been wimps resulting in the LAAS commission being completely IMPOTENT! 
    Now four out of the five LAAS commissioners are women who are seemingly spirited, spunky and determined to do valiant things to Stop The Killing! 
    The one male commissioner, Tariq Khero, STILL needs to put his "man pants on." Ever since he was appointed he has always been timid and uninterested in making positive and creative changes for the animals. He, along with the attorney for the LAAS Commission, Dov Lesel, are like two peas in a pod; appearing to be afraid of their own shadow when having to make tough decisions that would SAVE THE LIVES OF ANIMALS! But thanks to president Ramsayer, who along with the three other female commissioners is courageously stepping up to the plate like never before!
    Barnette and the LAAS Commission are also IMPOWERING the two newly appointed Department Field Officers (DFO's) who report directly to the General Manager. We are hearing that DFO Mark Salazar and Jan Selder are really trying to make major changes in the archaic ways the shelters have been run for so many years. It's extremely difficult, however, because some of the employees who have been around the longest are the worst!
    These old timers have been promoted over the years by a 'good ol' boys network' inside the LAAS administration. This network apparently hides complaints about those they have been 'friends with for years' instead of promoting those who are creative, progressive and humane. That's why the poor animals' have ended with those like Lieutenant Troy Boswell, Captain Wendell Bowers and Captain Karen Knipscheer Cox (and many others) having been at LAAS for OVER twenty years and are some of the worst employees currently holding top positions like "ACT Supervisors, Captains and Lieutenants!"
    Unfortunately, their obstructionism and obsession with wanting to hold on to their power (even though they are entrenched in a "Catch-and-Kill" mentality) makes it challenging, if not almost impossible to get rid of them! But that's where Brenda Barnette, DFO's Mark Salazar and Jan Selder and the LAAS Commission come in!
    These high ranking LAAS shelter employees who refuse to embrace progressive No Kill sheltering policies, protocols and reforms have a new General Manager, newly appointed DFO's and a new LAAS commission to deal with; and they're going to have to learn to play nicely in the sand box or get out of the way! 
    For years, most of these obstructionist high ranking employees' very identity has been their "petty" power trips and they have gotten away with it for years, even though the animals are dying and thousands are dead because of it. But as we have previously quoted Bob Dylan prophetic words, "The Times They are A Changin' " 
    Some of these foot-draggers have terrible social skills with the public and this has filtered down to the ones who are behind the front desk. These employees have been, and many STILL ARE, unprofessional and even downright nasty to the public. Over the years, these employees have actually DRIVEN away potential adopters because they don't get off their butts to take the public around the shelter and encourage them to adopt a companion animal!
    Some employees have been witnessed by the volunteers, other employees and the public for YEARS saying in a surly way, "Just go and look in the back" when a member of the public comes in enthusiastically wanting to adopt a dog or cat from the shelter. Many shelter employees try and CONVINCE the adopter that the dog/cat they want is "too old!" We have heard this complaint dozens of times throughout the years. THIS HAS GOT TO STOP. Adult dogs and cats are usually housetrained already and learn much faster then young ones, who not only need to be housetrained, but like to chew up furniture and are returned to the shelters in exasperation. 
    Exceptions exist- thank the lord for ACT Jake Miller at East Valley! But all the employees who deal with adopters should be like Miller and HELP the public adopt not only the dog/cat/bunny THEY want, but never discourage them from adopting older companion animals; this is a classic case of "ageism," and is just as bad as racism, homophobism, sexism and speciesism.  
    If our LAAS's "customer service" doesn't improve dramatically, to where LAAS is the "MACY'S department store of customer service, we'll NEVER get to No Kill. Because no matter how hard the volunteers/rescuers work to bail out some of the animals, who are then put up for adoption privately, if the LAAS employees are resistant to improving their customer service, then the public will continue to turn around and go someplace else to adopt or buy a pet.  
    We want to close by using a quote from Shakespeare who said "That he which hath no stomach for this fight, Let him depart." Positive changes are being made slowly but SURELY, but it takes the will and fighting spirit of our new GM, the newly appointed DFO's, the LA Commissioners and the humane community to make sure that the Department of LA Animal Services gets these resistant and lazy employees whose identities and "power trips" are threatened by positive changes (or ANY changes at all,) to either step up to the plate for our homeless animals or to simply DEPART!

    Winograd on PETA and Newkirk

    The Butcher of Norfolk (5th Edition)

    March 16, 2011 by Nathan J. Winograd 
    The numbers are finally in. In 2010, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) impounded 1,553 cats. They killed 1,507 and found homes for only 28. Another 9 were transferred to killing shelters and their fates are unknown. That’s a 97% rate of killing. In 2010, they took in 792 dogs and put 693 to death. They found homes for only 16, with 54 sent to killing shelters and their fates are unknown. That is, at best, an 88% rate of killing.
    While the No Kill movement is having unparalleled success and with No Kill communities now dotting the American landscape—in California, Nevada, Michigan, Kentucky, New York, Texas, Virginia, and elsewhere—PETA continues to be little more than a slaughterhouse. This is the fifth time I have run this very blog in as many years. This is my fifth plea to stop the Butcher of Norfolk.
    The blog I write is about reforming animal sheltering in the United States. It is about ending the systematic killing of animals in these pounds. But this particular blog isn’t about sheltering. This isn’t about the battle between the No Kill philosophy and its eventual conquest over regressive, kill-oriented approaches. This isn’t about a lazy, inept, or uncaring shelter director who fails to hold his or her staff accountable. It isn’t about shelters that kill animals because doing so is easier than putting in place the programs and services to stop it.
    This is about something more nefarious. This is about something truly insidious. This is about a bully who seeks out animals to kill. This is about the creation of death squads that actively go into communities with the specific purpose of finding dogs and cats to kill. And this is about a movement that has utterly failed to defend the innocent animals being slaughtered. This blog is about Ingrid Newkirk, the President of PETA. This is about an animal killing, arrogant, disturbed person. And enough is enough.
    Over four years ago, I wrote a blog opining that the reason PETA slaughters virtually every animal it seeks out and “impounds” has more to do with Ingrid Newkirk’s dark impulses than with any ideology, philosophy, or belief in overpopulation. This followed a staggering 97% kill rate for animals in 2006, despite millions of animal loving members, a world-wide reach, and a budget of tens of millions of dollars. It followed the killing of 1,942 out of 1,960 cats they impounded. It followed the deaths of 988 out of the 1,030 dogs they impounded. It followed the killing of 50 of the 52 rabbits, guinea pigs, and other animals they took in. It followed the killing of the one and only chicken they impounded. That blog earned me a letter from PETA’s attorney threatening litigation for defamation.
    Then came the 2007 numbers showing a 91% rate of killing—the killing of 1,815 of the 1,997 animals they impounded. And so I reran the blog. In 2008, I ran the blog once again (it has now been up continuously for over three years) because the slaughter—the needless, senseless, evil slaughter—continued with an equally staggering 96% kill rate. A paltry seven dogs and cats were adopted. A paltry 34 were transferred to an SPCA whose fates are not known. And out of 2,216 dogs and cats impounded, the rest were systematically put to death by PETA.
    Killed: 555 of the 584 dogs.
    Killed: 1,569 of the 1,589 cats.
    Then came 2009: only 8 adoptions, less than 1/2 of 1% of the animals they took in. Killed: 2,301 out of 2,366.
    And now 2010. Killed: 1,507 of the 1,553 cats. Killed: 693 of the 792 dogs.
    In the last ten years, they have killed over 25,000 animals: that’s roughly 2,500 animals a year every year for the last decade; or over five animals killed by PETA every single day.PETA has argued that all of the animals it kills are “unadoptable.” In fact, PETA’s attorney stated that in his letter threatening a defamation lawsuit if I did not back down. But this claim is a lie. It is a lie because the numbers historically come from the State of Virginia’s reporting form which only asks for data for animals taken into custody “for the purpose of adoption.” It is a lie because PETA refuses to provide its criteria for making that determination. It is a lie because rescue groups and individuals have come forward stating that the animals they gave PETA were healthy and adoptable. It is a lie because testimony under oath in court from a veterinarian showed that PETA was given healthy and adoptable animals who were later found dead by PETA’s hands, their bodies unceremoniously thrown away in a supermarket dumpster. And it is a lie because Newkirk herself admitted as much.
    In a December 2, 2008 interview with George Stroumboulopoulos of the Canadian Broadcasting Company, Stroumboulopoulos asks Newkirk: “Do you euthanize those pets, the adoptable ones, if you get them?” To which Newkirk responds: “If we get them, if we cannot find a home, absolutely.” In short, Newkirk admits that PETA “absolutely” kills savable animals. Absolutely, absolutely, absolutely.
    Why does the animal protection movement tolerate this woman?
    No other movement would allow someone to remain in her position without a massive outcry and public condemnation when their actions are so counter, so anathema to their movement’s foremost principles. The child protection movement would not allow someone who kills children to run an organization dedicated to children’s rights. The human rights movement would not allow someone who kills people to run any of their organizations. But the animal rights movement—a movement founded on the principle that animals have a right to life—allows a very public, avowed, shameless animal killer to run an animal rights organization. And with the exception of Friends of Animals, the rest of the nation’s animal rights groups remain deafeningly silent about it.
    As if that was not shameful enough, others go further and actually embrace her. The groups which organize the Animal Rights Conference inducted her into their Animal Rights Hall of Fame. Wayne Pacelle and HSUS have allowed her and her pro-killing apologists to give workshops at their national conference, HSUS Expo, to promote PETA’s ghastly vision of killing.
    So a notice to all would be animal killers out there. One way to avoid the condemnation by the animal rights/welfare community for your vile actions is to start an animal rights group yourself and use that group as your cover for killing. Because they won’t stand up to you. There will be no campaign to bring you down. They will kowtow to your power and your position. You will become their colleague. Some will look the other way. But others will induct you into their hall of fame. Still others will ask you to present workshops at their national conference.
    If history teaches us anything, however, it is that the only way to stop a bully is to stand up to one. The only thing that will stop Newkirk is challenging Newkirk and calling her killing for what it is: the nefarious acts of a disturbed person. Because that’s how history will remember and condemn her, despite the aura of legitimacy her untoward actions now receive from her Board of Directors, the Humane Society of the United States, the groups who promote the Animal Rights Conference, and the other groups which tolerate her leadership position through their silence.
    While those who now dare to call Newkirk’s slaughter for what it is may be threatened with litigation, or be attacked in other ways, history will vindicate them, as it always does for those who—despite the personal costs—defend what is right by challenging tyrants. While those who remained silent in the face of these atrocities—the hypocritical leaders of other organizations who take her telephone calls, shake her hand, stand side-by-side with her, and take personal pride in their association with her—will someday have to answer for this complicity, and will face the shame that comes with answering “nothing” when asked what they did to stop Newkirk’s bloody reign at PETA.
    Because engrave this in stone: As soon as Newkirk and her pro-killing cultish devotees are gone, PETA will immediately, completely, and without reservation embrace the No Kill philosophy and become one of its leading champions. When that happens; when her actions are thoroughly and completely seen by everyone for what they truly are; when she is condemned and finally, finally, thankfully, finally, we don’t have to hold our breath, clench our teeth, shake with rage, or cry at the thought of what PETA did to those poor animals, we will all be left wondering just what took us so damned long to rise up and stop this villain in our midst.
    So here it is again: Round 5. Munchausen by PETA. My opinion.

    An experiment in kindness

    An experiment in kindness

    I wish we could try an experiment. Create a small country where people took care of each other instead of finding reasons not to pay for Medicare, education or the poor. A country where they did not eat meat and kill 10 billion farm animals a year for food,  as in the United States, or kill hundreds of thousands of people in two wars based on presidential lies of weapons of mass destruction, or hunt whales nearly to extinction, kill dolphins for fun, harvest fish until the seas nearly become lifeless, like Japan, or eat cats and dogs and skin them alive for their pelts, as in China, or beat them to death as in Korea so they would be more "tasty."

    Perhaps that country would have no earthquakes and tsunamis, tornadoes or hurricanes, or killer snow storms. Perhaps we wouldn't have mass murderers shooting 25 people attending a congressman's meeting. This would be an experiment testing the truth of karma and also of God's grace.

    Where did Japan's latest disaster came from? The sea. In the second world war it came from the sky after Japanese soldiers killed 6 million Chinese, and hundreds of thousands of Filipinos, Americans, British and other nationals. China is always having natural disasters and man made disasters, including invasions by the Japanese. Now China represses and kills Tibetans. No learning there.

    What would happen to a nation that did not kill any sentient being and where every citizen felt diminished when any living thing had to suffer and die, and the only wars fought would be in self defense?

    I would say that even if God decided that that nation had to suffer disasters too, that its citizens would still be very, very happy.