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I started out this entry looking for search engines whose search results are solely female owned and operated web sites. You know sometimes you just want to support a sista. The sites I found were super ugly and overrun with Google ads and such. I don’t even want to give you the links to any of these sites, as they are super disheartening. Here is one link to see for yourself. This site is called Femina and no it does not make me proud to be a woman.

Ironically, Yahoo just got started their Womecentric site Shine today. I went to it and it is much more aesthetically pleasing then Femina and the like, but it is not about empowering or powerful women, it is just about targeting the female consumer base who love to buy their Procter & Gamble Crest White Strips [It seems Crest White Strips are their main advertiser, P&G who makes the Crest line refuses to stop testing its products on animals, despite the fact that these tests are not required by any law, and despite the fact that more reliable and humane alternatives do exist.].

Undies

This site is not about women supporting women, with their top story of the day being, “Lingerie hunt: Fancy panties that don’t cost $80 (for a piece of string )”. LOL. This is not a serious issue any woman is facing. I know I must sound like a crank, and I don’t think inherently there is anything wrong with nice lingerie, but when you have a voice that can reach so many people like Yahoo does, is this what we, as women, should be discussing? Instead, maybe we should discuss all the female genital mutilation that is going on in the world? Women globally are being mutilated against their will, so yes, I think it is socially irresponsible to have your main story be about g-strings, but maybe I am the minority [I do not really believe I am the minority. I believe more women do care, but people are told…sorry, this is another topic for another time…I have A.D.D.].

I guess again it is left up to us who want better, to create better. My next project [in line behind two other secret projects soon to be released into the world] will be the greatest Female Search Engine ever!!! I will make the commitment to use only truly sustainable advertisers if need be, but if that is not possible, I will do it for free out of love for my sistas and the brothers who support them.

Take back the night!

-Cara

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The 18th century philosopher Jeremy Bentham challenged the world about animals with his famous quandary: “The question is not, Can they reason? nor, Can they talk? but, Can they suffer?”. Curiously, science is every day discovering that in fact animals do all three: reason, communicate, and suffer. The differences between animals and humans are being blurred with every revelation. Man’s closest relatives share over 98 percent of our DNA, and all animals, including man, are related by a common ancestor. Today’s question must now be, can we humans use our known capacity for logic, communication, and empathy to take animals off our plates?

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It’s slow, yet mesmerizing and runs out of time for reasons I am not aware of, but I can’t get enough of it…Eco-Ego is its name, saving the world is its game.

Fun Japanese style.

-Cara

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In America today, only four companies slaughter 59 percent of all the hogs, only four companies slaughter over 83 percent of all the cattle, and only two companies slaughter nearly 60 percent of all the chickens. At the farm level, the trend over recent decades has been for many fewer operations to produce many more animals. In 1967, for example, there were over a million hog farms. By 1998, the number fell to 114,000. The trend has funneled many of America’s farmers into contract, or franchise-like, arrangements that strictly take choices about herd densities, feed, and veterinary care away from them. The changes have ushered in a polluted landscape, a host of new pathogens, and a hell on Earth for the animals.

Scotch B

Summer is coming up, which means for me, it is time to make my Jamaican jerk sauce. Unlike most commercial jerk sauces, this one is not over sweetened and under spicy. This is the real deal. I have yet to make an entirely organic recipe as I have not found organic scotch bonnet peppers anywhere. I e-mailed a few companies today asking if they sold any organic scotch bonnet peppers or seeds. I will let you know what I find out. If you do find the organic peppers you can have an organic version of this Jamaican jerk sauce, which is how I will write it…I am just warning you if I can’t find organic scotch bonnet peppers anywhere in New York City, it might be hard for you as well. :)

Jamaican Jerk Sauce Recipe

Ingredients

  1. 1/2 cup organic ground allspice berries [you can use organic allspice berries, if available, but use enough to give the equivalent of 1/2 cup ground.]
  2. 1/2 cup packed organic brown sugar
  3. 6-8 organic garlic cloves
  4. 4-6 organic scotch bonnet peppers [to control the temperature you can take out some of the seeds for less heat]
  5. 1 tablespoon organic ground thyme or 2 tablespoons of thyme leaves
  6. 2 bunches organic green onions [also known as scallions or spring onions]
  7. 1 teaspoon organic cinnamon
  8. 1/2 teaspoon organic nutmeg
  9. Organic salt and pepper to taste
  10. 2 tablespoon organic tamari [or Bragg Liquid Aminos if you’d like] to moisten

Tools

Food Processor

What to do!

Place the allspice, brown sugar, garlic, scotch bonnet peppers, thyme, scallions, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, pepper, and tamari in a food processor and blend until smooth!

Once you are done put it in the refrigerator to chill. This sauce, if kept in the refrigerator, never goes bad. I usually rub it on my homemade organic seitan and leave it for a few hours to soak in, then cook it in a pan with a bit of oil for a few minutes on both sides till it’s warm enough. Then throw it on a roll will lettuce, mung bean sprouts, raisins [mine soon to be made in solar powered food dehydrator], and carrot shavings. It is the best, filling, and puts some pep in your step!

Scotch Bonnet Peppers are very tasty and one of the hottest peppers [a heat rating between 150,000–325,000 Scoville Units], some say it is the hottest, others say the habañero [a heat rating between 200,000-300,000 Scoville units] is. I say as far as heat I can tell no difference between the two, but I think scotch bonnet peppers are the best.

While doing my research on scotch bonnets I discovered this guy Neil who runs www.thehippyseedcompany.com. He created a YouTube channel dedicated solely to testing the effects of consuming a variety of hot peppers. In his own words, “Hey, ill test all my varieties, put the vids here, People can see my review buy the seeds if want and mabee get a laugh if its a Hot variety..”

His test rules are as follows,
1. Eat a whole chili
2. Chew a minimum of ten seconds
3. Swallow it (if can)
4. Wait sixty seconds
5. Note results

Sounds simple enough, but watching him go through it all is an experience in itself. If anyone has seen a friend in a bet eating a hot pepper or the millions of other YouTube videos where British guys are crying in pain as they eat their peppers, they are in for a surprise with these videos. This guy, he is serious…see for yourself below where he eats a whole scotch bonnet pepper and discusses in real time the effects it is having on him. Sometimes I really like the World Wide Web and what it brings to the table.

There are health benefits to eating scotch bonnet peppers as well. The active ingredient in scotch bonnet peppers [and all chili peppers] is Capsaicin. It has been said to be a miracle drug. I take it to increase my circulation, especially in the winter, in capsule form.

Here are some other ways chili peppers are healing according to SixWise.com,

1. Fight Cancer

A study published in Cancer Research found that capsaicin caused cancer cells to commit suicide. The substance caused almost 80 percent of prostate cancer cells to die in mice, and prostate tumors treated with capsaicin were about one-fifth the size of those in untreated mice.

“Capsaicin inhibits the growth of human prostate cancer cells in petri dishes and mice,” says lead researcher Dr. H. Phillip Koeffler, director of hematology and oncology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and a professor of medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Further, researchers say capsaicin pills may one day be used to prevent the return of prostate cancer.

2. Provide Pain Relief

A topical form of capsaicin is a recognized treatment for osteoarthritis pain, and may also help alleviate pain from diabetic neuropathy.

Capsaicin is also known to inhibit Substance P, a neuropeptide that is the key transmitter of pain to the brain. Substance P can cause swelling of nerve fibers, which may result in headaches and sinus symptoms. Studies have found that capsaicin both relieves and prevents cluster headaches, migraine headaches and sinus headaches.

3. Prevent Sinusitis and Relieve Congestion

Capsaicin has potent antibacterial properties that fight and prevent chronic sinus infections, or sinusitis. Because it is so hot, it also helps to stimulate secretions that help clear mucus from your nose, thereby relieving nasal congestion. This phytochemical may also help relieve sinus-related allergy symptoms.

4. Fight Inflammation

Capsaicin is a potent anti-inflammatory agent. It works by inhibiting Substance P, which is associated with inflammatory processes. Capsaicin is being looked at as a potential treatment for arthritis, psoriasis and diabetic neuropathy.

5. Soothe Intestinal Diseases

A Duke University study found that capsaicin may lead to a cure for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The substance can also help to kill bacteria such as H. pylori, which can help prevent stomach ulcers.

6. Burn Fat and Lose Weight

Capsaicin is a thermogenic agent, which means it increases metabolic activity. This, in turn, helps to burn calories and fat. Many popular “fat-burning” supplements on the market contain capsaicin, as the substance may significantly increase metabolic activity for over 20 minutes after it’s eaten.

7. Protect Your Heart

Capsaicin may help to protect the heart by reducing cholesterol, triglycerides and platelet aggregation. It may also help the body dissolve fibrin, which is necessary for blood clots to form. Further, cultures around the world that use hot peppers liberally in their meals have significantly lower rates of heart attack and stroke than cultures that do not.

Eat well.

-Cara

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Fish make vibratory sounds with various “calls” that researchers have identified as communicating alarm and aggravation. They possess fully formed nervous systems as well as complex social behaviors. They are also capable of learning complicated tasks. British researchers discovered in 2003 that fish have the cerebral mechanisms to feel pain. As one animal activist once put it, “Fish are not merely vegetables that can swim.”

The last few Fridays I’ve given people some cool, eco, usually recycled ideas to buy, but for this Friday I thought we would slow it down a bit and MAKE something new out of stuff we already [most probably ] have.

The first of the three entries is a video from Make Magazine’s [MAKE brings the do-it-yourself mindset to all the technology in your life. MAKE is loaded with exciting projects that help you make the most of your technology at home and away from home. This is a magazine that celebrates your right to tweak, hack, and bend any technology to your own will.] YouTube channel. The video is of this girl, Cristen Andrews, who shares with us her super fantastical plastic bag crafting skills by showing us how to get started with are own crocheting of said plastic bags.

Enjoy…

The next one is hot. I found it on ecobites.com. It is a solar powered food dehydrator made from two cardboard boxes, some clear plastic wrap, and a little tape and voilà, you to can build an inexpensive solar dehydrator. Click the picture below for all the exciting instructions on how to build it and know when your goods are dry.

Dry

I can build it and put it on my fire escape to dry all the fruits and vegetables I want, seeing as I am in the penthouse apartment. I knew there was a reason I lived on the 5th floor of a walk-up, my unlimited access to the sun…or at least for a few hours. Good times.

My Very Own Super Fresh Recycled Idea!

What you need…

A used can depending on if it will be a pen/paint brush holder, a lamp base, a vase, a container to gift a gift in or whatever it may be, you choose the size.

Craft Paint [if you so decide you want to paint it]

Glue

Cool Pictures, Greeting Cards, Magazine Pictures, Drawings

Colored Sharpies [optional]

What you need to do…

Paint can with craft paint and allow to dry if you so choose.

Cut pictures from a magazine, greeting card, drawings, photos etc. to adorn the can or use colored sharpies to draw your own craziness on said can.

It is now an original piece of art.

I have discussed many ideas and a variety of products within my posts.  I have stated once I tried a project or product I would give you all the 411. I recently decided the best way to get that information back to you is by creating a page(s) of all my reviews of projects, products, petitions, protests, experiments and the like. That way they are separate from my daily blog entries. I think it will just be more organized.

We’ll see.

-Cara

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When faced with a flock of spent hens, an egg farmer may choose to induce production again by way of a forced molt–accomplished with starvation and water deprivation for periods of up to two weeks. No U.S. law prevents this heinous practice. Some major U.S. producers have phased it out but then need to bring twice the number of hens into production for the same number of eggs.

No Impact Man

I found this blog the other day called, No Impact Man. I forget what I had googled, but it came up. It is written by a man named, Colin Beavan.

I read the header which states, “A Guilty Liberal Finally Snaps, Swears Off Plastic, Goes Organic, Becomes A Bicycle Nazi, Turns Off His Power, Composts His Poop and, While Living In New York City, Generally Turns Into a Tree-Hugging Lunatic Who Tries to Save the Polar Bears and The Rest of the Planet from Environmental Catastrophe While Dragging His Baby Daughter and Prada-Wearing, Four Seasons-Loving Wife Along for the Ride.” . I could go no further at that moment, I was already exhausted and delving deeper into this blog seemed as though it would be a momentous endeavor to take on, so I bookmarked it for a later day.

Today was that day. I went to the site and started to read his entry, How I Don’t Blow My Brains Out and already, just with the title, I thought this might be good. It turned out it was an awesome entry. :) It has been a rough week and it is a dark and rainy day in New York City, it is what I needed at this moment. It is about the importance of being positive.

My favorite part is when Beavan writes, “So when I think of catastrophes, I try to think about all the wonderful people who are trying, against all odds, to help. When I wonder where God is in the horrible mess, I try to think that he/she/it resides in their hearts.

That’s what I’m talking about.

-Cara

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Results from two major studies involving tens of thousands of subjects–one in the UK (University of Leads, 2007), the other in the U.S. (Nurses’ Health Study, 2006)–suggest that the more red meat a woman eats the more she is at risk for breast cancer, regardless of her age. Suspected culprits include saturated fat, growth hormones fed to cattle, heme iron (only in red meat), and heterocyclic amines (carcinogens produced during the cooking process).

 

I am on the hunt for a job right now. The last job I was at outsourced jobs to Argentina, mine being one of them. Luckily, we received a package that has given me the time to find a job without worrying about money. This has been a great opportunity for me, due to the fact that at the time we were let go, I was not so happy at this company. I mean, I loved the people and such, but I was not really giving anything good back to the world or humanity, just taking.

Enough of all that; this is not what this entry is about, I was on Grist today looking through their jobs and found one for The Innocence Project. What are these guys all about you may ask? Well, according to their mission statement…

The Innocence Project was founded in 1992 by Barry C. Scheck and Peter J. Neufeld at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University to assist prisoners who could be proven innocent through DNA testing. To date, 215 people in the United States have been exonerated by DNA testing, including 16 who served time on death row. These people served an average of 12 years in prison before exoneration and release.

The Innocence Project’s full-time staff attorneys and Cardozo clinic students provided direct representation or critical assistance in most of these cases. The Innocence Project’s groundbreaking use of DNA technology to free innocent people has provided irrefutable proof that wrongful convictions are not isolated or rare events but instead arise from systemic defects. Now an independent nonprofit organization closely affiliated with Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University, the Innocence Project’s mission is nothing less than to free the staggering numbers of innocent people who remain incarcerated and to bring substantive reform to the system responsible for their unjust imprisonment.

I think this is awesome service that we need and am really glad they exist [even if they don’t hire me!!! :)]. I remember a few years back, I think it was on Oprah, there was this episode about the death penalty in America, something she is passionately opposed to. Oprah was discussing the controversy of judges in Texas NWP (napping while presiding) during death penalty hearings. Can you imagine falling asleep when someone’s life is on the line? That’s crazy! The lawyer [I think it was a lawyer, don’t quote me, as it was years ago that I saw this episode. I tried to find information on the internet about this particular show with no luck. I will email Harpo Studios and ask them for a transcript and permission to publish certain parts in this blog. It really was insane.] said that this occurrence is so common in Texas courthouses that they have a nickname for it [I do not remember the nickname but something like NWP.]! That is outrageous! You might be asking yourself, but what can I do about it? Well…I’m glad you asked. If you click on the link below you will be taken to The Innocence Project’s web site where you will find…

10 Things Anyone Can Do To Help Exonerate Innocent People and Prevent Wrongful Convictions

I just completed number 1 two minutes ago and invited my friends to join as well. I think a society that feels they are allowed to kill some people and not others is an ignorant one. No one has the right to take another’s life, period. Sorry, I had to say it.

Electric

Keep it real people and never forget to think, just because society and the government say it is OK, doesn’t mean it is!

Revolt against ignorance!

-Cara

 

 

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Many Americans are not getting enough magnesium. Deficiencies can cause irritability, seizures, delirium, depression, abnormal heart rhythms, spasms of the coronary arteries, anemia, blood clots, abnormal blood pressure, and even death. Where do you get this vital nutrient?–whole grains, fruits, dark-green leafy vegetables, nuts, and, best, raw cacao

Just something to think about.

-Cara

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Officially, Wildlife Services, a program of the USDA, prevents “damage to agriculture.” Never mind that agriculture is hugely damaging to wildlife, this multi-million-dollar perq for cattle ranchers exists primarily to exterminate species thought to spread disease and to eradicate predators. Non-target wildlife is often caught in the cross-hairs. Wildlife Services agents shoot, poison, gas, electrocute, and lethally trap millions of mammals and birds on public land where only 3.8 percent of the nation’s beef is even derived. The methods are often cruel and excessive and even ineffective. The program has decimated populations of grizzly bears, mountain lions, moose, elk, buffalos, and coyotes. Recently, an intriguing global study actually found that predators inflict negligible damage to ranching operations.

Joan

It is coming to a close this Super Fresh Month of Women, so time for a list of ten cool chic sites. Enjoy!

  1. Let’s start with Meredith Monk. Here is a segment of her bio from her site, “is a composer, singer, director/choreographer and creator of new opera, music theater works, films and installations. A pioneer in what is now called “extended vocal technique” and “interdisciplinary performance,” Monk creates works that thrive at the intersection of music and movement, image and object, light and sound in an effort to discover and weave together new modes of perception.” I personally think she rocks. :)
  2. Feminist Ecovillages web site contains information on a number of communities, both ecovillages and wimmin’s lands, at which feminism and ecology are values held by the group.
  3. This site is cool, it lists a bunch of places where awesome women made history [or herstory if you like!] They focus on 75 historic places in New York and Massachusetts associated with the varied aspects women’s history.
  4. Another site I really like is the Suffragist Oral History site. This site translates twelve interviews with twelve leaders of the Suffragist’s movement.
  5. Women time to learn your Bill of Rights, U.N. style. It’s all about the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
  6. Then there is the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women-International (CATW). They are a non-governmental organization that promotes women’s human rights by working internationally to combat sexual exploitation in all its forms.
  7. Then we have The Wip! What is their mission you may ask. According to their site, the Women’s International Perspective, The WIP, is a comprehensive news website of women contributors that reports world news, opinion, and commentary. Our mission is to provide quality news from the unique perspectives of women that is accessible worldwide and free to our readers.
  8. Women’s Space Work was created by, Yvonne P. Doderer’s. Her web site, based in Germany, provides annotated links to resources concerning cyberfeminism as theory and activism, political networking, feminist and lesbian activism, art on the net, among other things.
  9. The Feminist Sexual Ethics Project explores sexual ethics within Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and you can learn how the toleration of slavery in the early teachings of these religions affects the lives of women today.
  10. Last but not least, the Isle of Lesbos web site. The Isle of Lesbos web site is intended to serve as a place of art and culture for women-oriented women, offering a historical glimpse into lesbian lives and vintage views of affection between women.

Represent.

-Cara

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Genetics through single-trait selection has become as important a component of today’s intensive farming as drugs and confinement hardware. The animals themselves, right down to their DNA, must stand up to the rigors of the industrial process, both in life and in carcass form. They must produce at breakneck speeds and do so on as little feed as possible. And ultimately, the particular output they unwillingly give forth must please our final end user, the consumer, in texture, taste, uniformity, convenience, and price. Mutant genes that would never survive in the wild are cultivated to monstrous ends.

Play some computer golf while learning some “save the world” stuff.

Four!!!

Good times.

-Cara

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Adopting a high-protein fad diet may help you lose weight in the short run, but so might chemotherapy, food poisoning, or serious illness. If health is what you desire, you’re eventually going to have to learn how to eat. Resoundingly, the American Heart Association and other major health organizations warn people against the Atkins and other low-carb diets, because they can cause fatigue or dizziness and strain the kidneys. Often unbeknownst to the dieter, these diets induce dehydration. Also, upping fat and lowering carbohydrate intake has been found to impair brain function over time.

pa

Today’s recipe is really easy to make and so very good. I usually make it on a Saturday morning. I have yet to meet someone who did not LOVE it. :)

You’re welcome. :P :)

-Cara

Organic Pineapple Casserole

ingredients
1 stick organic butter, softened
3/4 cup organic sugar
5 pieces organic white bread toasted and crumbled
3 oganic, free-range eggs
large can organic crushed pineapple w/juice
tools
creamer
mixer
what to do
pre-heat oven to 350. cream together butter and sugar. combine eggs with the mixture and beat till fluffy. add bread and pineapple and mix well. bake at 350 for 40 minutes.

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Beef cattle are best suited to moist climates, such as those in Europe where their ancestors evolved. But ranchers in America’s West continue the destructive tradition of herding their animals on the nation’s most arid land. Grazing destroys ecologically regenerative riparian zones. According to a recent U.N. report, “the livestock sector may well be the leading player in the reduction of biodiversity…as well as one of the leading drivers of land degradation, pollution, climate change, overfishing, sedimentation of coastal areas, and facilitation of invasions by alien species.”

It is Friday again and time to look for three fantastical eco/green/recycled gems in this World Wide Web of ours.

The first thing I am going to show you are three different things, but due to their similarities I am going to list them as one gem out of three. They can be purchased on Recycled Planet Store, Inc..

fr

Recycled Maps Frogs made from discarded and misprinted New York City Subway Maps.

My Opinion: Who are you person who created such an awesome thing??? Thank you! :D

cir

Recycled Maps Beads Bracelet made from discarded and misprinted New York City Subway Maps.

My Opinion: Super cute, love the color of the blue beads in the pic.

sq

Recycled Maps Square Beads Necklace made from discarded and misprinted New York City Subway Maps.

My Opinion: Looks art deco, love the squares.

Bag

Number Two comes from a cool store , Bibelot. They carry a great line of ecobags made from recycled candy wrappers, recycled plastic bottles, recycled aluminum, recycled Coca Cola cans from Vietnam, and recycled newspapers.

My Opinion: I like anything that’s shiny and good for the world!

ellie

Last, but certainly not least is the elephant dung paper product site, Mr. Ellie Pooh. According to their site,

Mr. Ellie Pooh is a new eco-friendly, innovative company that sells 100% handmade journals, stationery, crafts, scrapbook/photo albums and various grades of paper made of 75% elephant dung (Ellie Pooh Paper) from Sri Lanka. Mostly, elephant orphanages supply the our Pooh, while Maximus makes a our exotic paper. Mr. Ellie Pooh distributes throughout the US and Canada.

All of our paper products are 100% recycled, 75% Pooh and 100% fun.

There are no toxic chemicals used in our paper-making process. Only basic bonding agents such as alum and rosin, along with water soluble salt dyes for coloring are used. No bleach. No Acids. As no alkaline or acid solutions are introduced during manufacturing, our handmade papers are of an ideal pH value for photograph preservation.

My Opinion: Why not! I love anything handmade and recycled. :)

OK, that’s all for today.

Charge It!

-Cara

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University research asserts that the feeding of approximately 10 million tons of poultry litter to U.S. cattle and other livestock every year is safe. But the mere presence of wasted feed in the mix, which otherwise includes excreta, carcass parts, bedding, and feathers, could include the stray remains of cattle. This would seem to violate the 1997 USDA rule that no cow is to eat the flesh of other cows, instituted to thwart the spread of mad cow disease. Also, poultry litter needs to be properly composted to neutralize microbial toxins–in practice not always done. Furthermore, livestock, so fed, need sufficient time to flush out veterinary medications that might have tainted the litter. Finally, feeding poultry litter to livestock provides one more vector for the spread of bird flu.

Wild

Marine & I ended up at Madison Square Garden on March 18th, 2008 around noon, to show our respect for Angelica, an elephant abused in Ringling Bros. Circus. It was a press conference for Intro 389 run by The League of Humane Voters and PETA.

If you don’t feel like clicking on the links, here is a sad blurb about some of the abuse that has gone on and why you should call or email your council member and urge him or her to support Intro 389, the bill to ban the use of wild animals in circuses, “A U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection report revealed that inspectors found large, painful wounds on the legs of baby elephants Doc and Angelica, caused when they were separated from their mothers. In the wild, female elephants remain with their mothers their entire lives and males for up to 15 years, but both of Ringling’s baby elephants were just under 2 years old when torn from their mothers.

I put together some pictures from the event and put them on my flickr.

Elephants deserve better!

-Cara

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The late parent advisor Dr. Benjamin Spock maintained that cows’ milk “causes internal blood loss, allergies, and indigestion and contributes to some cases of childhood diabetes.” In the last edition of his famous baby book he recommended, essentially, that children adhere to a vegan diet after the age of two. But he did not recommend dairy milk for babies either. According to renowned nutrition researcher T. Colin Campbell, “Cows’-milk protein may be the single most significant chemical carcinogen to which humans are exposed.”

Kiva

What is Kiva? According to their web site,

Kiva lets you connect with and loan money to unique entrepreneurs in the developing world. By choosing a loan on Kiva, you can “sponsor a business” and help the world’s working poor make great strides towards economic independence. Throughout the course of the loan (usually 6-12 months), you can receive email journal updates from the entrepreneur you’ve sponsored. As loans are repaid, you get your loan money back.

They seem to be a broker of microloans for small businesses in up-and-coming lands all over the world. You pick a person/business, pick an amount to loan them, then Kiva supplies you with all sorts of graphs and charts to show you how your money is being used. You can also request emails from the companies you have given a loan to.

For myself it would be a good way to not have money in my pocket to burn while doing something good for the world.

Good idea it seems…let’s see how this effects the global economy in the next few years.

I’m out.

-Cara

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Bestiality is integral to pork, turkey, and dairy operations. Numerous Web sites instruct in the craft of artificial insemination. Sample excerpts follow: click here to read more.

DNM

ForestEthics is hosting a petition to get a “Do-Not-Junk-Mail-Me” registry going, similar to the “Do-Not-Call” registry we already have in effect. The only thing you need to do is click on this link, put in your information, and click Sign Now! The letter is already writen for you,

Dear Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi; Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid:

Five years after the national Do Not Call Registry became the most popular consumer rights bill in history, citizens still face a different form of harassment: junk mail. Every year, Americans receive about 105 billion pieces of junk mail like credit card offers, coupons, and catalogs — that’s 848 pieces of junk mail per household. Even though 44% of that mail goes to the landfill unopened, we still spend eight months of our lives dealing with it all.

Junk mail is more than just an annoyance; it’s an environmental crisis. Every year, junk mail production destroys 100 million trees, creating global warming emissions equivalent to the emissions from 3.7 million cars.

We deserve the right to protect our privacy and our time. We deserve clean air and forest protection. We, the undersigned, support the creation of a national Do Not Mail Registry to provide a simple and comprehensive way for us to say no to junk mail.

Sincerely,

YOUR NAME HERE!!! :)

That can be done in 5 minutes or less.

I am proud to be signature number 29347!

Do it.

-Cara

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A USDA inspector, part of an ABC Primetime investigation, clandestinely filmed a plant that processes a million pounds of chicken for schools each year. The investigator found carcasses laden with yellow sores and fecal matter and machines caked with harmful residues. The plant had repeatedly failed salmonella tests. Some of the cheapest, most unsanitary meat tends to be sold to schools.

Jackie and Crew

The other day I did an entry based on my visit to stopbigmedia.com. I will not rehash all the drama, you can read it here if you want.

It leaves me sad to think about all that stuff….then tired from fighting the propaganda and advertising shoved down my throat while I watch TV, ride the train, walk the streets, listen to music, surf the web. I hear all the people telling me to then just turn it off, but do I really want to disconnect? How then can I fight the good fight to save myself and those who are still plugged in, which is the majority of people in the world? Plus, I am a super nerd and like following the evolution of technology.

Look, I’m not here to save all the unplugged people in the world. These 3 people can take care of themselves. I am here to help people like me who are excited for Season 3 of Workout, can’t get enough of Sandra Rinomato of the fantastical show Property Virgins. :D Someone who likes to sing a catchy jingle every now and again, and who has to get places in this supersaturated, advertising conglomerate called America. That is who I write for.

I was fighting with someone earlier in the day who was trying to get me to see the positive in something that was just super annoying and at that moment positivity was the last thing I was searching for, so just to be a jerk I started surfing the web for obnoxious positive quotes and “you-can-do-it”, “you-are-good-enough” crap to include in every exchange we had in this “debate”. Then a strange thing started to happen, as I read all these quotes and positive news, etc., I started to get in a better mood and feel more…positive.

For some it might be hard getting through the granola-ness of it all, my anger and desire to be annoying is what initially pushed me through it and then the good feeling I got kept me going…not bad.

Here is some of the positive sites I found for when you want to take a break from all the negative stuff surrounding you, but are too lazy to take yoga. ;)

  1. Mr. Positive has a blog! All good news, all the time! “Mr. Positive” David R. Boufford is the Founder of PNN-Positive News Network, Inc. and also a business coach and consultant.
  2. Then there is Positive News International, which has a US version as well. Positive News (PN) is a free, not for profit newspaper published four times a year. They report news from around the world in the areas of sustainability, social equality, education and happiness with a clear message that “another world is possible.”
  3. A blog, Only Positive News, who quotes the awesome Maya Angelou, “If you don’t like something change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” That’s positive!!! Their mission is to “remind you of all that is great in our world!” OK, sounds good.
  4. Lastly I was going to list some positive quotes sites I went to, but they all have so many banner ads an pop-ups I am afraid it will bring you down. Instead, I will list some positive and/or inspirational quotes I really like and you can come back to The Day After whenever you need a little bit of love!!!”
Quotes

“Hope is the dream of a soul awake.” —French Proverb

“Leap and the net will appear.” —Julia Cameron

“I must create a system or be enslaved by another man’s. I will not reason and compare; My business is to create.” —William Blake

“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” —Harriet Beecher Stowe

“Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.” —Isaac Asimov

“Never give up and never face the facts.” —Ruth Gordon

“What we need is to use what we have.” —Susan Sontag

“I am an expression of the divine, just like a peach is, just like a fish is. I have a right to be this way…I can’t apologize for that, nor can I change it, nor do I want to… We will never have to be other than who we are in order to be successful…We realize that we are as ourselves unlimited and our experiences valid. It is for the rest of the world to recognize this, if they choose.” —Alice Walker, Democracy Now Feb. 13, 2006

Alright, I think that covers a vast amount of positivity. I am going to stop while I am ahead.

Keep it real.

-Cara

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The world’s exploding human population, combined with its sagging ability to feed itself, appear to be on a collision course. The Green Revolution, which facilitated much of the recent growth, has clearly stalled out. Indeed, cereal availability per capita has been declining since 1984, and the “promise” of biotech is far from certain or free of risk. Today, 70 percent of grain in the U.S. and 43 percent of grain worldwide lavishly go to feed livestock. And just as the world clamors for more grain to feed to animals, so people can eat them, per-capita world cropland declined by 20 percent in the 1990s alone. The World Health Organization says 800 million people in the world live with chronic hunger. More meat production is definitely not the answer.

To celebrate Women’s History Month we’ve got Rosie’s Puzzle.

Enjoy.

-Cara

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A male calf born to a dairy cow: what’s a farmer to do with this by-product of the milk industry? If he is not kept for breeding stock or immediately slaughtered or factory-produced for meat, the calf will be raised for fancy veal. To this end, he will be locked up in a stall and chained by his neck to prevent him from turning around for 16-weeks until slaughter. He’ll be fed a special diet without iron or roughage. He’ll be injected with antibiotics and hormones to keep him alive and to make him grow. And he’ll be kept in darkness except for feeding time. The result: a nearly full-grown animal with flesh as tender and white as a newborn’s.

I do like themes. I like “Shopping” Friday and “Game” Sunday. Lately I’ve been feeling like Saturday needs to be something Saturday. I mean a non-theme stuck between two themes is crazy. What I came up with is a good-for-you-vegetarian-recipe-that-I-like every Saturday entry… :D

I would like to welcome everyone to the first official “Veg Recipe” Saturday.

Let’s start off with a staple of the vegetarian world…

Organic Seitan

2 cups organic gluten flour

1 teaspoon organic garlic powder

1 teaspoon organic ground ginger

1 1/4 cup organic vegetable stock

3 tablespoons organic tamari

3 teaspoons organic sesame oil [optional]

Add garlic powder and ginger to flour and stir. Mix liquids together and add to flour mixture all at once. Mix vigorously with a fork. When it forms a stiff dough knead it 15 times.

Let the dough rest 5 minutes, then knead it a few more times. Let it rest another 15 minutes before proceeding.

Cut gluten into 6 to 8 pieces and stretch into thin cutlets. Simmer in broth for 60 minutes.

Broth

4 cups organic vegetable broth

1/4 cup organic tamari

3-inch piece of organic kombu

3 slices of organic ginger [optional]

Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring broth to a boil. Add cutlets one at a time. Reduce heat to barely simmer when saucepan is covered. Seitan may be used, refrigerated, or frozen at this point.

I use this recipe all the time. I usually use vital wheat gluten when I do. It is great in a sandwich with homemade Jamaican Jerk sauce, lettuce, mung bean sprouts, raisins and carrot peels. I love it!!!

 

Bon Appétit

-Cara
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Every spring, neighbors of chicken feedlots in North Carolina desperately complain about the stench. It is then that ammonia-laden fumes from adjacent manure lagoons begin to permeate everything porous that they own: clothes, rugs, drapes, and hair–haunting them for weeks. But unlike the state’s infamous pork industry of 10 million hogs, poultry growing is virtually exempt from environmental regulation. For North Carolina’s 165 million tightly confined birds, there are no rules, because their waste is considered less noxious. But over a year’s time, the droppings and mortalities accumulate in pits below to about a foot deep and, to some, smell even worse than lagoons of pig excrement. Nearby wells become tainted from runoff, but it’s nearly impossible to trace this kind of pollution back to the polluter.

Frame

I was thinking of what to write about for Friday’s Eco-Shopping entry, when I remembered this frame I got working as a buyer at Whole Foods. The frame is made out of an old car radiator. The company’s name is J Line Design out of San Diego, CA. I searched all over the World Wide Web and found nothing. :( They are the inspiration for today’s blog entry. I looked for three products made out of some sort of recycled auto parts. As a side-note if anyone knows what happened to J Line Designs please let me know.

Chess

The first thing I found was a chess set made from recycled auto parts. The artist who created this chess set is Armando Ramírez. Ramirez collects the leftover metal pieces off a die machine and shapes them into the pawns, horses, and parts of the kings, which also feature cogs from a car’s electrical system. The queens are made from screws, cogs and bearings from a car’s electrical system. The bishops are shaped from sparkplugs and the towers from cogwheels. The board is made from a metal sheet and features ornate iron wires and bendix caps taken from a car’s electrical system.

It looks pretty cool and is on sale for $98.95…That’s a steal in N.Y.C. and it is a green choice. I don’t need a chess board as I spent my childhood playing chess, striving to beat my father, the smartest person I know…and the day I did I never played again…I’m like that.

Martian Lady

She’s a Martian made from a muffler!!! Excited? If so check out Muffler Art by Quick Stop Muffler Shop and Auto Service in Decatur, Alabama. There are all sorts of creatures and Aliens. I would call first to make sure they are still in business before placing an order or stop by 1303 6th Avenue S.E., Decatur, Alabama 35601 and tell them Cara sent you. ;) Maybe I’ll call tomorrow and ask if they are still open. UPDATE: I called today and they are still open. I also found an email…I should be a detective! :)

Nice

Last but not least, Simple a nice little shoe company out of Santa Barbara. A company that uses recycled tires on the out soles of their super fresh looking ecoSNEAKS… For now there is free shipping which is always a sweet deal. :)

Shop right.

-Cara

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By some assessments, the H5N1 strain of bird flu, which originated in Asia and is now spreading across Europe and Africa, has the potential to disrupt life on planet Earth second only to global nuclear war. Others predict that if the strain mutates, perhaps just slightly, a bird-flu pandemic could kill more than 140 million people and put a halt to [U.S.]$4.4 trillion in world economic activity. Influenza pandemics generally come three times per century, and we’re overdue for our next. Any strain of influenza that humans contract, including H5N1, would scarcely exist if people had never domesticated poultry.

Stop Global Warming Dot Org

This one is an easy one…

Stop Global Warming Dot Org’s mission is to use the strength of numbers to urge our government to join the rest of the world in addressing global warming, and urge business to start a new industrial revolution of clean energy that reduces our dependence on oil.

It is a site where all you have to do is click and enter a bit of infomation and click again. Not a lot of work to make an impact in the world.

Make a difference.

-Cara

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The senseless waste of the world’s growing meat-centered diet is illustrated by a hypothetical statement put forth by the Population Reference Bureau: “If everyone adopted a vegetarian diet and no food were wasted, current [food] production would theoretically feed 10 billion people [49 percent more people than alive today], more than the projected population for the year 2050.”

A topic I have left alone so far is big media. It is such an enormous issue to discuss, much less conquer, that I am brought down just thinking about it. I was doing research today on who own what media firms. Who has their little dirty fingers where and in the process I found this site StopBigMedia.com.

What’s So Bad about Big Media you may ask, well according to StopBigMedia.com,

  • Big Media fail local communities. Big Media companies get a sweet deal from the government. They get to use the public airwaves — for free — to make billions in profits. In exchange for this government handout, broadcasters are supposed to serve the public by offering quality programs that meet the needs of local communities. Instead, Big Media companies gut local newsrooms and ignore local issues.
  • Big Media ignore diversity. Big Media have limited ownership opportunities for women and people of color, pushing them off the public airwaves and stifling vital voices. Coverage of issues that matter to people of color, women, the middle and working class, and rural communities has disappeared. The result? Media that fail to represent our nation’s diversity.
  • Big Media are bad for democracy. Democracy can’t exist without an informed public. We rely on unbiased news from independent sources to stay informed and to hold our government accountable. But media consolidation means fewer sources of news, opinion and information. Instead of hard-hitting critical journalism, Big Media give us a junk diet of celebrity gossip and sensationalism.

I like what I have seen so far, but I haven’t spent hours on it. I think is cool and their site is not saturated with ads for crap pens and free credit reports like most media companies’ sites.

Turn off the news, stay off their web sites. They are perpetuating the belief that the world is much worse than it is, but wouldn’t you feel better if you bought something…anything…

I would prefer a hug.

Turn off your TV!

-Cara

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Birds are cheap and cages are expensive, so battery hens live out their dreary days in space just about the size of their own bodies. No hen gets to run, build a nest, enjoy a cleansing dust bath, protect a chick, forage in the sun, perch, fly, or even lift a wing. Instead, this creature will crouch and suffer and fend off the feather pulling of cage mates. And every egg that is laid will roll away down the slope of a wire floor, which will also cripple her legs and feet.

The Art of Greenwashing by Tom Fishburne

 

I learned a new word today, greenwash.

Permatopia.com definition of greenwash is,

the false claim of environmentalism by polluters, used as a noun and a verb. Most of the claims for environmental policies by governments and corporations are greenwash that distract from the goals of a sustainable civilization.

I heard the word on this super fresh site I found called gliving.tv.

Here is a little blurb about them, by them,

We started G Living to focus on the positive and creative side of green. We look for green solutions that are practical and easy enough for anyone to incorporate into their own lives. The solutions, ideas and products have to have the same (or a higher) standard than the traditional options everyone is used to.

You can look at it like this: G Living is not about just Green Living, it’s about smarter living. Here is the equation to figure out if something is “G”: it must have, The Green factor + Quality + Function + Design + Style + Price = “G”.

I like how they put that. They are located in Venice, California…just saying.

Anyway point is, I just sat through a 15 minute video [which NEVER happens] an interview by Sarah Backhouse, with the co-founder, Howard Brown, of the organic fashion line, Stewart+Brown [the other co-founder is his wife Karen Stewart] and really was into it. Watch it!!! You will hear terms like greenwashing and people power, you know you’ll love it. They are doing a cool/good thing, so do it up! I think the collections on their site are fresh.

I adore good fashion!

-Cara

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Wild salmon stocks in 20 Norwegian rivers have in recent years been wiped out by a parasite that first took hold in local aquaculture feedlots. Scotland’s river managers warned early in 2007 that one careless angler spreading the parasite could decimate Scotland’s wild salmon stocks as well. Pharmaceuticals and pesticides are typically added to all aquaculture pens to forestall disease and infection, sometimes doing neither and inadvertently causing environmental havoc.

Eat Well

I really love the World Wide Web sometimes. Just when I start to think, what am I going to write about, I find a great link.

This time that link is Eat Well Guide.

about them…

The Eat Well Guide is a free online directory of thousands of family farms, restaurants, markets and other outlets that offer local, fresh and sustainable food in the United States and Canada.Visitors simply enter a zip or postal code to search for food that is free of antibiotics and added hormones, and produced by healthy and humane methods that include organic, pasture-raised and heritage.The Eat Well Guide does the research for people who want to find good food and support local, sustainable farmers.

I did a search tonight and it seems pretty right on. I’ll let you know if anything changes.

Let’s eat.

-Cara

——————————-

Today’s confined cattle live in their own excrement, which is the carrier of the deadly E. coli strain O157:H7. Caked-on manure will migrate to edible portions during dehiding, thanks to line speeds of 390 animals per hour and laborers who are not always properly skilled. Ground beef today is made up of mixtures of hundreds or even thousands of animals. The grinding process brings surface pathogens to patty interiors that may, down the line, not be cooked adequately. A university study found that O157:H7 may also be harbored in the interior of a solid piece of meat.

The Great Green Web Game

This game tests your knowledge of how consumer choices affect the environment. As you answer questions and ‘shop green’ the Envirometer gauges the cumulative impact of your choices. The center point on the Envirometer represents the impact of an average American household — at the end of the game you can compare this average to your own impact on air quality, water quality, natural habitats, and the sustainability of our climate.

My Awesome Opinion: I like this game because you learn what your impact is on the environment. I also enjoy the sound effects and cute characters you can choose from. :) I like the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Enjoy.

-Cara

——————————-

Feedlot meat is a product of the oil age. When cheap oil is gone, cheap meat will be history. A pound of beef takes three-quarters of a gallon of oil to produce, according to National Geographic. A 1,250-pound steer essentially embodies 283 gallons of oil. Thirty-five calories of fossil fuel are needed to produce a single calorie of beef protein. By comparison, only two calories of fossil fuel are required to produce one calorie of tofu.

YEAH!!!

It is Women’s History Month every March, so I decided to give the Ladies a shout out. Here are a few things you can do this month to honor women more than usual.

1. When you hear a sexist joke or comment, say something! Often such asides and jokes seem harmless and may not truly represent an individual’s beliefs so much as they are just meant to get a laugh. Unfortunately even something that seems like harmless fun can be painful to others and have wide reaching consequences. Don’t be afraid to confront such individuals with a short, no-nonsense approach such as: “I can’t believe you just said that” or “What a disgusting sentiment”. Such a stark reminder that sexism is intolerable may be enough to shock the individual into reconsidering his or her words, or to shock others into vocal support of your statement. [Do Something!]

2. Take a field trip [or road trip], to one or all of these museums I’ve listed below to learn more about some of the many women that have made a positive impact on the world. [Cara]

A) The National Women’s Hall of Fame which is located in Seneca Falls, New York, the Birthplace of Women’s Rights. The history I discovered about the Hall is, “…in 1848, Elizabeth Cady Stanton (a Seneca Falls resident), Lucretia Mott and 300 other women and men held the first Women’s Rights Convention. The Declaration of Sentiments, modeled after the Declaration of Independence, was presented and passed by the convention. These resolutions included among other demands, that women have the right to vote. The struggle for women’s rights had begun.” I myself love the Women of the Hall section on their web site. I discovered it a few years ago; when in an older blog I had a weekly Awesome Lady entry. It is a fantastical reference tool. I need to go visit the actual museum.

B) Women’s Rights National Historical Park…what…see I had no idea about this place. I live in New York City and Marine and I are always looking for places to go on day or weekend trips. For sure we are going this month. :) Some things you can do while you’re there is visit the Visitor Center :D, where there are exhibits and an introduction film about the Park. You can also check out the Wesleyan Chapel, site of the First Women’s Rights Convention. The M’Clintock House was the home of Thomas and Mary Ann M’Clintock, prominent members of Waterloo’s Quaker community who were instrumental in the planning and hosting of the First Women’s Rights Convention. And last, but not least the Elizabeth Cady Stanton House was the home of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, her husband Henry, and their seven children. There are guided tours though all these spots.

C) The National Women’s History Museum, founded in 1996, is a nonpartisan, nonprofit educational institution dedicated to preserving, interpreting, and celebrating the diverse historic contributions of women, and integrating this rich heritage fully into our nation’s history. You can not visit it as there is no actual location yet. They are working it out right now. It is going to be in DC. Here is what they say about their situation, “Until the House of Representatives approves the NWHM’s pending legislation for a museum site, we are operating as a museum without walls. The Senate has already directed the General Services Administration to lease the abandoned Pavilion Annex of the Old Post Office on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. to NWHM to serve as its museum and research center – if the House approves this legislation then in the future you can visit us there.

D) The Women’s Museum is located in Dallas, TX. I myself have never heard of this museum. They are a Smithsonian affiliate, The Women’s Museum™: An Institute for the Future makes visible the unique, textured, and diverse stories of American women. Using the latest technology and interactive media, the Museum’s exhibits and programs expand our understanding of women’s participation in shaping our nation’s history and create a lively environment for dialogue and discovery. Thousands of stories recount public and private triumphs and the struggles of those who would be denied their freedoms in all its forms: political, social, and spiritual. I myself have never been to Texas, so I would love to visit. The museum sounds cool. I must live under a rock. :)

E) The last Museum is located on the World Wide Web. It is the International Museum of Women. The mission of I.M.O.W. is, to value the lives of women around the world. I.M.O.W. is a groundbreaking social change museum that inspires global action, connects people across borders and transforms hearts and minds by amplifying the voices of women worldwide through global online exhibitions, history, the arts and cultural programs that educate, create dialogue and build community. Again this is another museum I had never heard of. Now that I found it though, I’m excited to check it out and maybe use it as a reference for some future entries.

3. Write a blog entry, a zine, a magazine article, a book, a myspace bulletin, an article for your local paper, a flash animation, a short film, etc about a strong woman in history that gives you inspiration. Spread that love to the world. I don’t care what anyone says we have to work harder to get what is easily given to others. It makes us stronger. No problem. :) [Cara]

4.Take a 21 question Women’s Suffrage quiz to see what you know and learn what you don’t. I liked it. [Cara]

5. Nominate an American woman for a new commemorative stamp. Write a researched essay about her contributions [see three] and submit it to the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee (CSAC) for consideration. [The National Women’s History Project (NWHP)]

6. Take some magazines, photos of important women in your life, and/or draw pictures, cut them up to use in the creation of an awesome collage to celebrate the month of super fresh chics! [Cara]

7. Be nicer than usual to other women, even if they make you mad! [Cara]

8. Call your mom a few more times than last month. [Cara]

9. Take the Get The Picture: History Challenge. It says it is for kids, but I think we to can learn some new stuff [or win really easily. :D]. [Cara]

10. Do the New York Times, Women’s History Crossword. [Cara]

Girl Power!!!

-Cara

——————————-

Several of the world’s mightiest rivers no longer reach the sea, and aquifer levels around the world are dropping by dozens, and even hundreds, of feet. Largely responsible is the fivefold increase in worldwide (water-guzzling) meat production that’s taken place over the last half-century, and the trend is not over. Producing a pound of animal protein requires about 100 times the water to produce a pound of vegetable protein. It takes about 1,300 gallons of water to produce a single hamburger. Seventy percent of the water that is pulled from the world’s rivers, lakes, and underground wells goes to agriculture, and 43 percent of the world’s grain goes to feed animals for meat.

What is a better time then the dawn of Spring to buy a new scarf? I don’t think there is a better time really. It is sale time in scarfland. We are not at the point quite yet for the super scarf sales, but close enough to start thinking of the perfect one.

Here are some super, fresh choices I found. Three of the scarves were discovered on BranchHome.com, and the last two I found were on OriginalGood.com. I can not review, nor endorse their quality and/or usefulness as I have yet to try any of them, but I like the look, how they were made, and from what. :)

Pieces of Scarf

Navy Modular Scarf

design:
Galya Rosenfeld

manufacture:
Handmade by Galya Rosenfeld, San Francisco, CA

materials:
Reclaimed ultrasuede (scraps from the upholstery industry)

dimensions:
59″ long x 3.75″ wide

about:
Galya Rosenfeld’s work sits on the lines between fashion, design, craft, and art. Ruled by mathematic formulas as much as creativity, her designs emerge from the place where whimsy meets pragmatic thought. Her pieces are individually crafted, often without the use of thread, patterns or other tools found in traditional tailoring.

Galya’s pieces have been accepted into the permanent collection of The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

price:
$224.00

Brick HouseOther One

“Flow” Scarf

design:

Hiroko Kurihara

manufacture:

Handmade by Hiroko Kurihara Designs, Oakland and Berkeley, CA

materials:

100% virgin wool from Italy. Material is EU ecologically certified.

dimensions:

62″ long x 8″ – 10″ wide

about:

With each scarf that Hiroko Kurihara Designs sells, they donate a scarf made of recycled polar fleece to a local organization that serves those who are homeless or in transition. This act of giving requires no additional purchase: it’s simply responsible, ethical consumerism.
Hiroko Kurihara Designs’ creations are high quality, uniquely designed and handcrafted in their Oakland and Berkeley California studios from the finest European virgin wool that is EU ecologically certified. They guarantee their crafts(wo)manship and believe in local non-sweatshop manufacturing.
Enjoy the warmth and the style of this scarf and know you are tangibly giving much needed comfort to someone else.

price:

$128.00

scarfred one

Warm and Fuzzy Scarf

design:
Tibetan refugee artisans

manufacture:
Original Good Store

materials:
Recycled Silk and Wool

dimensions:
55 x 6 (in.)

about:

Helping Tibetan refugee artisans by providing new markets for their crafts, these wonderfully happy hand-knotted wool creations are sure to keep you warm. Not only are they handcrafted in Nepal, but they are Fair Trade certified. They are also dry clean only. :)

price:
$29.95

Stay warm!

-Cara

    ——————————-

    In the mid-1970s, chicken processors argued that in order to keep up with skyrocketing demand they should be allowed to merely rinse off fecal matter from bird carcasses rather than cut away affected parts. The government gave in to the processors’ request, and the rule stands to this day. A number of studies have since proved that rinsing carcasses, even up to 40 times, is ineffective at dislodging the filth. It’s something to know since the violent motion of factory de-feathering rubber fingers not only works to squirt feces out from the carcasses, it can push filth deep into the crevices of the birds’ skin.

    Krank Lamp

    I found this lamp on gizmag.com. I love the design. It reminds me of something you would find in a 50’s fallout shelter, well what I imagine you would find in a 50’s fallout shelter as I have never been in one! :)

    US designer Efrain E. Velez says the Krank was inspired by the shape and function of an old-fashioned mechanical drill. It uses the principle of magnetic induction [the process that makes a substance magnetic (temporarily or permanently).]. You crank the handle, which agitates a magnet surrounded by a copper coil and after a minute of that there is sufficient voltage to power the L.E.D.s for 40 to 60 minutes of light.

    The Krank design features a recycled body made from aluminum parts, so it is double green, no electricity and recycled parts.

    Nice work.

    -Cara

    ——————————-

    Of all the animals in America who suffer cruelty, 95 percent of them are farmed animals. Designated as economic units, they have conveniently been stripped of all protections against abuse. At the federal level, the Animal Welfare Act simply does not apply to farmed animals. At the state level, where laws might pick up the slack, anti-cruelty statutes are either not enforced or have, in recent years, been re-written to exclude farmed animals. In the case of the latter, if a farming practice is established as “accepted,” “common,” “customary,” or “normal”–no matter how inhumane–anti-cruelty protections are overridden. In essence, it’s the criminals dictating the laws to suit their designs.

    In January I wrote about the Catalog Crisis in America and some solutions to stop receiving millions of unwanted catalogs. That entry has inspired today’s topic of how to stop receiving other types of junk mail that ends up in your garbage and then landfills.

    1. Credit Card offers are the worst. According to the Federal Trade Commission, If you decide that you don’t want to receive prescreened offers of credit and insurance, you have two choices: You can opt out of receiving them for five years or opt out of receiving them permanently. Call toll-free 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688) or visit www.optoutprescreen.com for details. The telephone number and website are operated by the major consumer reporting companies. When you call or visit the website, you’ll be asked to provide certain personal information, including your home telephone number, name, Social Security number, and date of birth. The information you provide is confidential and will be used only to process your request to opt out.

    Remember that if you have joint credit relationships, like a mortgage or a car loan with a spouse, partner, or other adult, you may continue to receive some prescreened solicitations until both of you exercise your opt-out right.

    That is good to know. I am going to opt out for sure. I don’t need to waste all that paper or another credit card!

    2. To stop the multitudes of AOL online discs, is call 1-800-605-4297. I don’t think you can do it online.

    3. That crazy ValPak you get in the mail all the time, but can never really use the 18 carpet cleaners and your not moving soon, so cancel it!

    4. Direct Marketing Association has some great tips on their web site as well. Like, How to remove your name from mailing lists. Some consumers would like to receive less advertising mail at home. DMA’s Mail Preference Service (MPS), which was created in 1971, is designed to help consumers decrease the amount of nationally generated commercial or nonprofit mail they receive at home. Here is information on how you can opt out of mailing lists.

    Now that we have gone over the serious stuff. Check this web series out, Off The List. This guy, Jonny Hal is on a one person mission to get off all junk mail lists.

    Series Preview

    [For all the Episodes click here]

    It is awesome. I love this guy.

    This web series reminded me that we will never get our true voices or message heard through mass media. as their only purpose is to sell advertising. I think we all need to think of how we are going to make a difference. Jonny Hal did it through his webisodes. I am doing it with this blog. The internet is still in it’s infancy, it is the Wild, Wild West, while we can still get our voices heard here we need to. No more complaining that one person can’t make a difference, of course we can, that is just the type of thinking is the people making money off your faithlessness want you to believe.

    Wake up!

    -Cara

    ——————————-

    Half of every butchered cow and a third of every butchered pig becomes either byproduct material or waste. And “mortalities” are integral to every feedlot and stockyard. What’s an industry to do with all this death and gore? Call the renderer straightaway! Recycling, they call it. Lips are exported to Mexico for taco filling; horns are made into gelatin; other parts are fashioned into drugs, aphrodisiacs, and industrial ingredients. Much is dried to a tacky brown powder to be mixed into chicken and pig feed. The rest is minced, pulverized, and boiled down for cosmetics and household products. Essentially, assume slaughterhouse byproduct is all around you.

    I thought it was time for another petition to save the world on TDAAIT, it has been awhile, plus this one comes with a video.

    Click here to go to the petition.

    Thank you SaveOurEnvironment.org.

    Take Action!!!

    -Cara
    ——————————-

    Two major studies have emerged recently that show the vegan lifestyle to be conducive to lower body weight. A Swedish study of 55,000 women and a British study of 65,000 men and women both found vegans to have lower BMIs (body mass index) and to suffer less often from obesity. Vegan food tends to be lower in calories by volume. And since plant-based fare is likely to contain abundant fiber, it satiates quicker.

    I am just going to cruise over this topic in this entry and supply you with links to learn more if you so choose. Freegans [According to Wikipedia, “Freeganism is an anti-consumerism lifestyle whereby people employ alternative living strategies based on “limited participation in the conventional economy and minimal consumption of resources…“] the new Vegans [According to Wikipedia, “Veganism is a philosophy and lifestyle that seeks to exclude the use of animals for food, clothing, or any other purpose.“] are coming up again in conversation. I remember 10 years ago watching Geraldo or one of those shows about kids dumpster diving for meals, instead of giving into consumerism. They were all white and dressed as fashionable disasters. I am curious what happen to the original Freegans. Where are they now?

    I remember in Chicago, again 10 or 11 years ago, some of my friends who moved from Chicago to Cali were all into it. I myself think it’s crazy to associate freegans with vegans because as a vegan I wanted to eat healthy and not mess with animals…I certainly did not want to eat bacteria infested garbage, seeping with dog crap, heroin needles and a plethora of other nastiness that dwells in the bowels of the dumpsters of New York City.

    dump

    Besides not liking the association with vegans I am glad freegans exist. I don’t have the courage I guess…well not the courage, because if I had to dumpster dive for someone else, for some important reason or because I had no money, I would not be afraid to. I just REALLY prefer not too. I AM glad some people are willing to pick up the slack and kick ass for me and others who are not willing to go that extra mile. I think it’s awesome actually.

    One thing if I may I suggest to freegans is, you may not need to dumpster dive. When I was a kid my friends and I developed relationships with pizza places and such where at the end of the night [behind the place…by a dumpster. :)] they would give us the food they were going to throw out, or Ann Sathers in Chicago after 9pm, gave away their soup of the day to anyone who wanted it for free. If not, they would have just thrown it out [It is like what City Harvest does here in NYC. They develop relationships with all types of businesses and send trucks to pick up the excess food that would have been thrown out and wasted. They then use that food to feed our homeless. I guess that is why freeganism hasn’t seemed to really have caught on here…so far. Also, I bet California garbage looks better than some New York City fruit stand’s goods. ]. We did a whole bunch of stuff like that to get by back in the day, but I like fresh food and siting down at a table these days. I guess I’m getting old. :)

    I’m out.

    -Cara

    ——————————-

    Early in 2007, Consumer Reports tested 525 supermarket chickens from all across the U.S. and found only 17 percent free of both salmonella and campylobacter. Premium brands labeled “organic” or “raised free of antibiotics” actually harbored more salmonella than conventional ones. Most of the bacteria were resistant to at least one type of antibiotic, making food poisoning from eating poultry that much harder to treat. Some samples showed resistance to multiple classes of antibiotics.

    It is not only a memory game, but as you play you learn way to reduce your carbon emissions. Sounds like good times…

    Let’s play!

    -Cara

    ——————————-

    Egg-laying hens in the U.S. are crammed into battery cages, each with 4 to 8 other birds, stacked in rows by the tens of thousands. Manure and rotting-carcass fumes billow up from below. Beetles form a layer over the waste. Some birds get loose and drown in the pit. Others get tangled in the wire and die of dehydration, then decompose, covered in bugs, while cage mates have no escape. Intense stress sets birds to attack one another. After 17 months of confinement, necks are covered with blisters, wings bare, combs bloody, and feet torn. By now, the birds are considered an expense and will be disposed of, expediently.

    tbs

     

    I wrote a blog entry on Recycline toothbrushes last month. I sent the entry to the them to share my super fresh writing [ :) ] with the company that inspired it all. Justin from Recycline got back to me. He was cool and offered to send me a toothbrush to try if I hadn’t already picked one up [He also said, “…I can attest that, with the 12 employees of Recycline all squarely behind the company mission, I feel lucky to be able to work here.”. See the original entry to understand what he is talking about.].

    I got the toothbrush yesterday, it is a cool black shade with soft bristles and I swear the handle feels like a yogurt container, but that may be more psychological than anything else. I tried the toothbrush this morning and love it so far, but like a lot of things in my life I get excited way too soon. I will use it some more then give my official review. That is not what this entry is about…it is about what am I, like millions of others, supposed to do with my regular, non-green toothbrush. I don’t want to just say too bad and throw it out. I got on the case and here’s what I found…

    According to www.freshfromthefarm.us, “some 50 million pounds of toothbrushes are tossed into America’s landfills each year. “. That isn’t even the number if everyone switched their toothbrush every three months like is recommended!!! What??? That is crazy.

    There are also other green alternatives besides Recycline like, the TerrAdent line of toothbrushes from Eco-Dent. They came up with this solution to be more green, replaceable heads.

    Here’s what they say about it, “The most commonly available toothbrushes require you to throw away the handle every time you need to replace your toothbrush. Hundreds of millions of these plastic handles pile up in land fills all across the country, taking up space and not breaking down. At the same time, enormous resources have to be used to create more and more plastic handles to replace those in the land fills! The cycle goes on without an end–until NOW. TerrAdenT Replaceable Head toothbrushes provide the best solution by allowing you to keep the handle and simply replace the heads, quickly and conveniently, when the time comes. Others who have tried to address this problem, while well-intentioned, have not worked through the solution quite as well. TerrAdenT is a far better solution than mailing a handle back to the manufacturer for recycling, when one looks at the ecological and monetary costs involved in transporting the handles back to the manufacturer, and then going through a recycling process which requires tremendous amounts of energy to re-use the plastic, and then having to transport the new “recycled plastic goods” back into the marketplace.

    Then of course there is the original old skool eco tooth brush, Radius. The ones who cared and did something about it first.

    Here’s what they sell,

    The Original

    The wide oval head, thumb grip and large comfortable handle available in right or left orientation makes this a classic toothbrush – now in its 22nd year of production.

    The Scuba

    The wide oval head flexes back and forth to remind us to reduce the pressure of brushing – large soft handle for sensitive brushing. Now in its 18th year of production.

    The Intelligent Toothbrush

    The Intelligent Toothbrush monitors your brushing time to 2 minutes. After 90 days of brushing it advises you to check the bristle wear and possibly change the head.

    The Source

    Replaceable head toothbrush with renewable resource handle – reduces environmental impact. Radial bristling – first toothbrush in the world to have it. Makes brushing easier and more effective. 3,080 Tynex nylon bristles – available in soft or medium. Reversible for right or left hand.

    Replaceable heads reduce environmental impact. First toothbrush in the world to have “Radial Bristling” making brushing easier and more effective. Soft or medium.

    They have also reduced their packaging recently which has lowered the shipping cost 30%.

    I could not find any way to recycle toothbrushes for people who can’t find these options in their local store and don’t have the money and/or time to order toothbrushes on-line. What I did find was toothbrush crafts and other useful ways a toothbrush can be used after they are no longer cleaning your pearly whites!!!

    Carol Duvall from HGTV came up with a cool solution make bracelets out of them. It is pretty basic system, but a little imagination and who knows what you can come up with. Maybe paint them or while they are malleable carve cool designs in them, or use stickers, etc.

    Below are some ideas for toothbrushes after their original use is over. If you have anymore let me know and I’ll add them to the list.

    1. Use for polishing your shoes. This is especially useful for where the shoe meets the sole.
    2. Use for cleaning threaded mechanical parts.
    3. Use for cleaning greasy auto parts.
    4. The artistic type can use one as a coarse paint brush.
    5. Use for cleaning combs.
    6. Melt the handle until soft enough to bend at a 90 degree angle (with bristles pointing out), and use it to clean coffee makers, etc.
    7. Use old ones to clean the grooves between the tiles in your bathroom or floors.
    8. Using a permanent marker, you can make vegetable/flower ids for the garden.
    9. Use them to hold up plants in the house.
    10. Children can use them for splatter painting, or puppets.

    That’s it for now. If anyone hears of a way to recycle everyday toothbrushes, let us know.

    Keep it real.

    -Cara
    ——————————-

    Governments try to regulate fishing gear, catch size, species, and fishing season, but usually without success. Perhaps the biggest single threat to global fish stocks is illegal, unreported, or unregulated (IUU) fishing, which, it is estimated, amounts to about a quarter of the world’s catch. In some locations, IUU fishing has been documented to amount to four times the legal catch. Efforts to combat piracy are fraught with obstacles, not the least being feverish world demand for fish. For pirates, the return on investment is well worth the risks of side-stepping fishing conventions, skirting surveillance, off-loading fish to other boats that “launder” the catch, and docking at complicit ports. Because when pirates are actually caught, the penalties tend to be inordinately light.

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