Thursday, April 30, 2015

"The moment you realize you are a cat"
http://youtu.be/Rxwt2ToeFTQ

I Love Cats, I'm the cat lady on the Block (Amanda Jones Section C)




Discursive Cativity: Structuralism and Internets

This is yesterday's discussion activity in summary.


Fable: the intensity of the image
 or, the intertext:


Allegory: the meta-aesthetic ("am i art?")

Bonus! Make your own lolcat: http://bighugelabs.com/lolcat.php (someone asked for a pic of my cat)




Wednesday, April 29, 2015



I ran across this video while scrolling through my Facebook news feed. It makes me really sad when I see animals who are helpless and in danger.  When the baby elephant was stuck in a mud hole I was supper worried, But I'm so happy that all the villagers came to help the baby elephant out of the mud hole. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ittBzMYQeE


I wanna try #9

27 Insanely Delicious Recipes You Wont Believe Are Vegan
If anyone that thinks vegan food has to be boring, check out this list.


saw this go pro video of a pug having fun in the snow with their owners. I feel like this shows more of a family relationship than just a pet since the pug is doing human activities(sledding) and it's even wearing clothes. Of course this also also includes other animals not just dogs but just for the sake of an example of animal and human interaction between one and another. Maybe I'm a little biased since I have 2 pugs of my own which my mom also puts clothes on them and she treats them like children and sometimes calls them my "siblings"

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Apparently Relationships and Sex With Animals Are Legal in Denmark

Some gnarly stuff. A window into an animal rights issue/animal role in society that isn't talked about much. I'll let the video speak for itself...

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Animal Welfare and Animal Rights (Posted by Amanda Jones section C)

Animal Welfare and Animal Rights: A War of Words with Casualties Mounting

Animal Welfare and Animal Rights: A War of Words with Casualties Mounting
By Jill Montgomery on behalf of the Animal Welfare Council
The media and public use animal welfare and animal rights interchangeably, but they are not synonymous terms. In fact, the philosophical gulf between these two belief systems and the advocacy efforts currently underway by each group carry enormous implications for true welfare of the horses and for the future of the horse industry. In light of legislation pending on the Federal level as well as in various state Houses, it is imperative that the general public, as well as anyone with an interest in horses as work or recreational animals, come to a full understanding of each philosophy, the methods by which proponents of each carry out their missions, and the implications of each approach for the horse industry and for the animals the industry serves.
Animal welfare is a traditional model that directs stewardship of animals to their best use and humane practices, while setting the value of the animal relative to its benefit for mankind. The American Veterinary Medical Association describes animal welfare as “a human responsibility that encompasses all animal well-being, including proper housing, management, nutrition, responsible care, humane handling, and when necessary humane euthanasia.”
Animal welfare reflects the belief that animals have the right to be handled humanely and to live a life free of pain; however, animal welfare advocates do not believe that animals should have rights equal to those of humans. Animal welfare has been advocated for more than 140 years in the United States. This approach is codified in law at the local, state and federal levels.
The animal rights movement is a relatively new ideology that embraces the philosophy that an animal has rights and that those rights are equivalent to those of humans. Animal rights activists reject the use of animals for any purpose, whether or not the animals are treated humanely. Animal rights activists do not believe that animals of any type should be used in research, sporting events or entertainment venues, or as food. Animal rights activists do not believe that animals should be used as work animals and believe that breeding and exhibiting animals in zoos and conservation parks is a form of exploitation. Animal rights activists lobby strongly for legislative action to further their agenda; in some instances, such action has drastic consequences not only for the livestock industries but for the well-being of the animals. That the consequences are, perhaps, unintended is irrelevant.
Animal rights activists have a heavy influence on public attitudes. The horse industry is currently encountering many challenges, not all of them from the animal rights movement—but all exacerbated by the animal rights movement’s interference. A number of influences, ranging from social ideology to economic recession, have combined over the past decade to create a shift in the traditional use and value of horses as livestock. Wildly fluctuating fuel prices have increased feed and transport costs. Available land for horse facilities is disappearing, driving land costs up. Changing economics make continuing horse ownership unrealistic for many owners. The closing of processing plants has dropped the baseline value for horses to zero, increased the number of marginal horses on the market, overloaded rescues and sanctuaries, and lowered the market value of horses being sold and resold within their useful lifespans.1 Yet proponents of animal rights have put increased pressure on an already vulnerable industry by insisting that the humane treatment of a horse be defined as having one unchanging  guardian from the cradle to grave, regardless of that person’s capacity to provide ongoing care. Even the change in nomenclature from “owner” to “guardian” implies an enormous shift in attitude toward the rights and duties of animal management.
The “Unwanted Horse” has become a battle zone between animal welfare and animal rights proponents. The American Association of Equine Practitioners defines unwanted horses as “horses that are no longer wanted by their current owners because they are old, sick, injured, and unmanageable (e.g. vicious or dangerous), fail to meet their owner’s expectations (e.g. performance, color, or breeding) or their owner can no longer afford them.”  While numbers that encompass all unwanted horses are not well defined, the number of US horses that are exported and processed for food in Mexico and Canada has been widely adopted as a figure that tracks the overall number of unwanted horses. In the US, for 2012 that number is estimated to be 158,657, or 1.7% of the 9,200,000 US horse population.2 This number represents the additional number of animals each year that, absent an option for processing, must be housed in rescues or sanctuaries, euthanized by other (generally more expensive with greater environmental impact) methods, or simply abandoned—and there is certainly no “humane treatment” in this last alternative.  In fact, since the U.S. processing plants were closed in 2007, a dramatic increase has been documented in the number of horses being neglected or abandoned, further straining the capacities of local and state government animal control departments. The severe economic consequences of a ban on processing cannot be ignored, and must be addressed.3
How do animal rights activists further their mission? The general population’s increasing distance from agriculture creates an opening for animal rights extremists to sway the public perception of the role animals play in our lives.
The horse is undeniably familiar and beloved, with a universally positive image, but that image is no longer necessarily agricultural; the populist view of horses has shifted from work partner to recreational partner and backyard pet. Those who own horses may identify the animal’s role (livestock or companion animal) by the specific purpose for which they use their animals, but those who do not own horses are more likely to identify them most as companion animals. (Western Horseman Survey 1998)
This perception shift opens the door for the animal rights movement to promote the drive to change the status of the equine species from livestock (part of agriculture’s food and fiber industry) to companion animal. They are helped with their agenda by the simple fact that today a large number of Americans have no direct experience with food production, harvest, or hunting; instead, most demonstrate a disconnected “meat comes in plastic from the grocery store” mentality. To this group, the concept of processing and consuming an animal with which one is familiar is acutely uncomfortable; it seems to violate an unspoken social contract between human and animal whereby the human is obligated at all costs to prolong the life of an animal deemed a “pet.”  The unintended consequences of that belief have not proven to be the best way to protect the welfare of some horses.
It is important to remember that there are laws in place to protect horses now.Following the animal welfare model, laws and regulations have been developed and refined by government process at local, county, state, and federal levels to ensure humane treatment of animals. These address abuse and neglect, set minimum standards for care and custody, and establish owners’ rights for disposition of the animal.  Final disposition of horses (humane euthanasia) within the context of existing laws is taken seriously by responsible horse owners and animal welfare advocates.
The public (and some segments of the horse-owning population) may not grasp the gravity of this divisive argument about horse classification and humane treatment. In fact, horses and their owners enjoy many benefits from horses’ livestock status, ranging from federal health and disease programs to property tax considerations. In the quest to further their vegan agenda, animal rights activists would welcome the loss of these benefits, making horse ownership more expensive and problematic, ultimately diminishing some of the very protections that guarantee the horse’s welfare.
The primary tool animal rights extremists use for this approach has been lobbying to propel legislation through emotionally laden marketing efforts. Unfortunately the legislation behind the emotional appeals has not addressed the necessary practical issues, such as adequately funded rescues and sanctuaries, setting capacities and standards of care at such facilities, and ensuring that appropriate options are available for euthanasia and carcass disposal. In fact, it is the animal rights movement itself that has created the problem of unwanted horses; they have raised millions of dollars to support legislative campaigns to ban horse slaughter, all the while providing  almost no financial support for the actual care of the unwanted horses their agenda has produced. (Humane Society of the United States spends less than 1% of their $1,000,000+ annual budget for direct animal care4)
In evaluating propositions (including legislation) for changing established humane management practices, it is imperative to be aware of the source of offered information and the slant of such material. Discerning the philosophical foundation for proposed laws at any level is critical not only for the survival of the horse industry, but also vital for the welfare of the horse itself.
                                               
Jill Montgomery, © 2013 Animal Welfare Council, prepared this article. It is available for reprinting with permission by contacting the Animal Welfare Council at awc@animalwelfarecouncil.org.
The Animal Welfare Council, which is a non-profit, tax exempt 501 (C) (3) organization established for charitable and educational purposes. Membership includes organizations and business entities who are actively involved in caring for animals in recreation, entertainment, sport and industry.
  1. Government Accountability Office Report to Congressional Committees onHORSE WELFARE Action Needed to Address Unintended Consequences from Cessation of Domestic Slaughter”, GAO-11-228, June 2011
  2.  USDA, Horses Transported for Processing, 2001-2012. Cited athttp://www.ams.usda.gov marketing report information request, April 20, 2013.
  3. Ahern, Ph.D., James J., David P. Anderson, Ph.D., DeeVon Bailey, Ph.D., Lance A. Baker, Ph.D., W. Arden Colette, Ph.D., J. Shannon Neibergs, Ph.D., Michael S. North, MBA, Gary D. Potter, Carolyn L. Stull, Ph.D., “The Unintended Consequences of a Ban on the Humane Slaughter (Processing) of Horses in the United States”, Animal Welfare Council, Inc. 2006
  4. HumaneWatch.Org. How Little Does HSUS Give to Shelters in Your State? Posted Jan 16 2013, cited on the internet  April 19, 2013

Friday, April 24, 2015

Bow Riding Common Dolphins

I went whale watching today and saw a pod of about 100 common dolphins (there were humpback whales too but tbh they were not very exciting to watch)! The dolphins actually came right up to the boat and were "bow-riding", which means they were riding the wake created by the boat. It's interesting to think about whether they were doing this for fun (unavoidable anthropomorphism) or because it was energy efficient to catch a free ride from the boat. All this happens in our Monterey Bay "backyard"! #getonaboat

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Oh, NUTS!

This squirrel is trying so hard to hide his nut in the dog's fur.

Please enjoy this squirrel attempting to hide a nut... inside a dog's fur

Posted by Lost At E Minor on Thursday, March 5, 2015

Jane Goodall: How humans and Animals can Live Together

The chimpanzee researcher Jane Goodall talks about TACARE and her other community projects, which help people in booming African towns live side-by-side with threatened animals.



The Sexual Politics of Meat Follow-Up

I thought this would be an interesting follow-up to the discussion held in lecture about Carol J. Adam's book "The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory". Below is a segment taken from an interview with Carol J. Adams. 

"There is something very similar in the way we cut animals up into body parts, turning them into objects for our consumption rather than seeing them as whole beings, and the way in which we cut women up into parts in order to treat them, not as whole human beings, but as sexualized bodies or body parts. When it comes to organizations such as PETA, who regularly feature the sexualized bodies of women in their ad campaigns, many excuse this particular form of objectification, arguing that we must do anything we can to save animals, but why is it that we so readily accept the objectification and dehumanization of women? Even when we object to the similar representation and treatment of animals? And why is it that we think it appropriate to exchange o
r replace one form of exploitation for another, as these ad campaigns which use women’s bodies to ‘sell’ animal rights, do?"

Spirit of the Forest

This made me think of how there is always some sort of connection assumed between women and animals. It reminded me of some origin stories such as "Actaeon" or "The Animal Bride" because this creature is not fully human, but is not exactly "animal" either, instead she is a mix, and in this case, like "Actaeon" some sort of Goddess like creature.

Cat & Dog Dichotomy: Is it gendered?

Sasha + Izzy. August 26, 2014.

This photo was taken in my kitchen back home in the Bay Area (East Palo Alto), it reminds me of how cats and dogs are always made to seem as if they are against each other. My dog Sasha is in the spotlight of the photo, meanwhile Izzy is in the background kind of blending in with the door. 
                  
             Most of us have interacted or been around cats and/or dogs, therefore I find an importance in discussing a topic of interest: the cat and dog dichotomy. I have been asked whether I am more of a dog or cat person at least 10 times, ever since I could remember and maybe you also remember this incident happening to you. I love both equally so I can’t ever choose one over the other in these incidents. However, I recently came across a journal by the sociologist, Lisa Wade, who unraveled the idea about how this dichotomy has been gendered. I believe she is pointing to a valid socially constructed dichotomy that has been embedded into our society that now some cannot convey it. She states, “And don’t we think men with cats are a little femmy or, at minimum, sweeter than most…And don’t we imagine that chicks with dogs are a little less girly than most, a little more rough and tumble? The cat person/dog person dichotomy is gendered.” She then explains the idea about having too many cats is thought of as crazy, yet having one dog or a lot of dogs has been normalized to seem cool. Usually when we think of someone having too many cats, we think of a crazy cat lady and how someone with a dog or a lot of dogs are much more outgoing than the crazy cat lady would. There has been a socially constructed gender dichotomy between dog or canine people and cat or feline people, where feminine identified people are paired with felines and masculine identified people with canines. This is important when it comes to speaking about dogs versus cats because dogs are given a sense of hierarchal power because of the coolness they get entailed with, meanwhile cats are used to get the millions of views on YouTube for simply doing what cats do. One example of this is the cartoon show Cat Dog, where the cat is always the most intelligent and the dog does something silly or idiotic. What are your thoughts?


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A cat who likes to stand on two legs :3

A nice album of a cat who loves to stand.

how do birds feel about the juicernet?

video "the juicernet is like wahtever dood"

This is the part of the blog where we make suggestions

This is a suggestion post to suggest things to post about animals. Please add suggestions of things to post in the comment section below as a reference for people who aren't sure about what to post.

Matt's suggestions (which I will add to here):

1. Video games and animals
2. Pictures of your neighbors' pets
3. Really famous things that feature animals prominently that you haven't noticed before (like JFK's inauguration speech quote "ride the tiger!" the less appreciated cousin of the "ask not what your country...")
4. Anything to do with the internet and animals obvi
5. Surprising animal encounter stories (remember not everything needs a picture/video too)
6. Reactions to lecture and section
7. Math or science or engineering and animals
8. Places for animals (parks, zoos, etc)
9. Clothes and animals

etc.

Chimpanzees granted 'legal persons' status

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/apr/21/chimpanzees-granted-legal-persons-status-unlawful-imprisonment

This article from The Guardian talks about an event that just occurred where chimpanzees were granted legal rights. This is the first time that nonhuman animals have ever been given this status in the US. While its unknown how the trial will proceed it still marks a change in how animals, especially chimps, are treated.


Sunday, April 19, 2015

Octopus Intelligence


Tofu I love you #veganlyfe

Tofu is a mystery. Is it a cheese or what!? It’s made by fermenting soybeans, and is often mixed with preservatives so watch out. The most common of the “meat substitutes,” it is a seemingly untamable beast. So common, yet so hard to make: it’s what keeps Chinese restaurants in business I swear. Above all, tofu is a delicacy. It’s cake for vegans, barely dinner. To do justice to such a glorious product, first you have to get the water out of it. I rinse first, then wrap it in a paper towel to clean it. Then, I wrap it in four pieces of paper towel, squash it between two plates, and put books on top. Wait until those are soaked and repeat.

For fried tofu, I usually cook it in a lot of oil at very low heat, stirring and turning as often as possible with a flat spatula (plastic if you have the time, wooden if you end up needing to scrape the pan): the long version takes over half an hour–see below for browning process.









Also pictured is the Tofu pizza. The only special things I do for pizza are put a bunch of leeks in the sauce, also vegan pizzas lose flavor because of the relative lack of fat, so I just try to get the most “pizza-like” tasting toppings to make up for it, like peppers, olives, mushrooms... or eggplant works really good too!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Puppies

I have a teacup chihuahua back home and she just had her puppies this month. They were born on April 13. I am a dog lover and if you are too then you will think this photo is adorable. I haven't decided on what to name them yet. If you have any ideas feel free to comment.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Funny French Anthropomorphized Cat



It's funny and weird, but also exemplifies the tendency of humans to give animals, esp. pets, human qualities. Poor Henri.
Great TED talk on how animal stories can have a lasting affect on the cultural perceptions of animals.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

 Ingredients:

  • 1 pear
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 1 small head of broccoli
  • 2 in piece of ginger
  • 1 lemon
  • 5 celery stalks
  • 1/2 cucumber
Directions:
  1. Wash all produce well.
  2. Add all ingredients through juicer.
https://igcdn-photos-c-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xfa1/t51.2885-15/11093108_346686625529146_828153493_n.jpg

I choose to post this because it is funny but sad/true at the same.  Deciding not to harm or kill animals is not the same as saying we think of them as human or treating them as human.  It doesn't make any sense to treat any animal as man, or to treat any animal as any other type of animal. But, that's no reason to be harming or killing them, just because they are not one of us.

A Really Great Way to Try Tofu

I was not a huge fan of tofu when I first tried it, but then I went out to eat in Santa Cruz and the restaurant served tofu a similar way as this recipe does, and I have to say...it is really good:) Additionally, this kind of shows how it is possble for humans to survive and be nourished by substances other than meat and still get the same benefits and nutrients from it. Hence, there is no need to excessively kill or hunt animals for meals.
INGREDIENTS
  • For the Stir Fry
  • 1 14-ounce package firm or extra firm tofu
  • 2 cups roughly chopped green beans
  • 1 cup diced carrots or red pepper
  • 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil for sautéing (or sub peanut or coconut)
  • For the Sauce
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce (make sure it’s gluten free if G-Free)
  • 1 Tbsp fresh grated ginger
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp agave, maple syrup (or honey if not vegan)
  • 1 Tbsp corn starch
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and begin drying your tofu. Drain, remove it from the package and place between two thick towels folded into the shape of the tofu. Then place a plate or bowl on top and top it with something heavy like a book or skillet.
  2. Let it dry for about 15 minutes, changing your towels if they get too wet. Once dry, chop into roughly 1-inch cubes or rectangles (see photo).
  3. Arrange tofu on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet to prevent sticking and bake for a total of 25-35 minutes, flipping once halfway through to ensure even cooking. This will dry out the tofu and help give it a more meat-like texture. If you want a tougher texture, cook it for 30-35. For a slightly more tender texture, pull it out at 20-25 minutes to check.
  4. Once it’s golden brown and a bit tough and firm, remove from the oven set it out to dry a bit more while you prep your vegetables. Ideally, it would set out another 45 minutes or even longer. I haven’t tried letting it set out for much longer, but I don’t think it would hurt either way.
  5. If serving over rice, start the rice at this point.
  6. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together all of the sauce ingredients – set aside.
  7. To a large skillet over medium-high heat, add sesame oil and swirl to coat. Then add veggies and toss to coat. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring often. When the vegetables have some color and have softened a bit, add the sauce and stir. It should bubble and thicken. Then add the tofu and stir to coat.
  8. Cook the mixture for 3-5 minutes, stirring often. When veggies are cooked to your preferred doneness, remove from heat. Serve as is or over rice for a more filling meal. Best when eaten fresh, though will keep in the refrigerator for a couple days.

-courtesy of allrecipes.com 


    Intelligence is not a valid justification for taking life. To put this as simply as possible, cats, dogs and hamsters are not as intelligent as us. But most people would be appalled to think of that as a reason to kill or harm them.

    Miguel del Zorro

    I know I already posted this, but there were necessary changes I really needed to make. (Can you spot the difference?)

    First of all, giraffes are my absolute favorite animals. I went to the Sacramento Zoo recently, and I spent a lot of time observing and watching the giraffes to see what their day to day life was like. I wonder what it feels like for the giraffes to constantly be specimens of human observations and to be taken from their natural habitats. I know that I wouldn't like it if someone uprooted me from my home and family. 

    Infrastructure, Institutions and You

    Take your time and wonder when
    how and long your time is spent
    You'll never guess what would've happened
    your family stripped from you and your land forgotten
    You'll never guess who I am
    and that okay, I'd rather stay hidden
    As far as you know, I'll be a lamb
    Stocked on your selves and forgotten in your freezer
    For you, I have no eyes and no real meaning to your being
    I am the food in your stomach and always being made easier
    If there was a choice given to me I would take the road to fleeing
    But instead I'll stay trapped with the trigger waiting.




    Miguel del Zorro


    Also, I saw this on pinterest. So this one is for all you cat lovers...


    If anyone is having a bad day, hopefully this will cheer you up. I know it put a smile on my face.

    Carol Adams in Vice

    http://munchies.vice.com/articles/why-men-are-afraid-of-going-vegan

    Here's the beginning:

    In the West, plant-based eating has never been more popular. From the United Nations and the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee advocating that more people adopt a plant-based diet to its increasing mainstream accessibility, vegetables are clearly in vogue. Yet despite this, recent statistics reveal that only 3.2 percent (7.3 million Americans) follow a vegetarian diet. Nearly 60 percent are female; just over 40 percent are male. Roughly half a percent, (1 million), follow a vegan diet—79 percent of whom are female.
    As with most everything else in life, politics add as much piquant flavor to food as any ingredient—and this is extremely apparent when looking at plant-based diets. While a “V” on a label or menu now commonly means “vegetarian” or “vegan,” isn’t there also an unspoken assumption that it stands for “vagina”? You don’t have to be a feminist rocket scientist to suspect that gender plays a big role in the divide between the sexes when it comes to ditching meat.
    Two seemingly disparate authorities on the topic agree: John Joseph, frontman of the legendary hardcore punk band Cro-Mags, Ironman triathlete, and author of Meat is for Pussies; and Carol J. Adams, radical feminist theorist and author of The Sexual Politics of Meat. Both argue that the conflation of masculinity and meat is a critical factor in men’s dietary choices.

    Monday, April 13, 2015

    A Smidgen of Happiness and Warmth

    Cute Dog Video

    in case you wanted to brighten your day or just feel warm and fuzzy inside.

    Carry on, fellow slugs!

    Thursday, April 9, 2015

    Recipe: Seitan from Vital Wheat Gluten (with fresh basil) #veganlyfe

    Seitan, the most meat-like of the "meat substitutes" in my opinion, is made from vital wheat gluten, which is the protein in flour that gives shape to kneaded dough. This is the first time I've made it so who knows! Apparently you can also make it from regular flour by rinsing off the starch (and wheat gluten is pretty expensive), but I just bought this chickpea flour and vital wheat gluten from Bob’s Red Mill products. [revised to use half the bag]

    For the broth:
    8 C water
    2 T Molasses
    4 T soy sauce
    For the seitan:
    2 1/4 C vital wheat gluten
    1/3 C nutritional yeast
    1/3 C chickpea flour
    1/3 Ts salt
    3 T paprika
    Dashes pepper
    1 T oregano
    2 T basil (more if fresh)
    2 or 3 T mustard
    1/3 C vegetable broth
    1 3/4 C water


    Get the broth started before you prep the dough at med/low. Always a good idea to mix dry ingredients before adding the wet. Knead dough for 2-3 minutes until slightly gummy. Roll and shape into 20 patties. Boil for 45 min to 1 hour in broth at low boil (not a "rolling" but a light boil: they should be bopping around a bit, nothing crazy) stirring and flipping occasionally. Save in broth after cooling.



                                                I didn't knead enough


    Yum! Here's some cooking music: