Name: Tom

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    Hopefully – a trend: New York state to ban fracking

    December 17th, 2014 No Gravatar

    The more I’m reading about the health and environmental impacts of fracking, the more I’m convinced we’re a long way from this being a safe system for drilling for gas and oil.

    Oh we get the take from Big Oil and Big Gas – that it’s completely safe and the people who live around the fracking wells have nothing at all to be afraid of. We hear that the chemicals that the industry refuses to disclose but are pumping into the ground are very safe.

    Don’t be concerned about your neighbors being sick. Look at the pretty towers rising across the horizons. Think of them as towers of gold and magic.”

    The industry doesn’t have a great track record for safety. And even when full-on, horrible disasters strike, like the Gulf Oil Gusher, the industry blows off concerns and underplays the extent of the impacts.

    Should people have trusted the cigarette manufacturers when for decades they claimed smoking was safe? Naah – I think I’ll trust science; thank you.

    Of late, we’re seeing more research bubble to the surface on fracking. The news that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is ready to ban fracking in his state offered up more news about the dangers.

    But while Cuomo seems to be ready to take this positive step, reports indicate his administration had previously attempted to delay and soften a report about the dangers of fracking.

    A Capital New York article from early October reports in the final version of the report, “some of the authors’ original descriptions of environmental and health risks associated with fracking were played down or removed.”

    So even in state that might become the first to ban fracking, the coverup on the dangers of the practice was well underway.

    I’m just not going to trust the states or the industry, in claiming the chemicals are safe. Why would be that naive?

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    HSUS leader Wayne Pacelle reviews results for 2014

    December 16th, 2014 No Gravatar

    In his A Humane Nation blog this week, Humane Society of the United States leader Wayne Pacelle reviewed the organization’s “Top Transformational Results of 2014.”

    The list features:

    South Dakota becoming the 5oth US state to adopt a felony animal-cruelty law.

    It is now a federal crime to attend or bring a child to a dogfight or cockfight.

    The truly idiotic and evil “King Amendment” was tossed out of the Farm Bill.

    A federal appellate court rightfully overturned a horrible ruling from a lower that might have tossed out the animal crush video law. If I recall, the lower court tried to claim that torturing and brutally killing animals was protected free speech. That’s one for the Moronic Court Ruling Hall of Fame.

    So arguably the current leader for the Moronic Court Ruling Hall of Fame is Citizens United.

    A number of countries have agreed to end the use of gestation crates for pigs.

    Three horse-slaughter plants were blocked from opening this year.

    A new U.S. Department of Agriculture rule blocks the importation of puppies for sale. This means at least foreign puppy mills can’t sell here.

    Internet sellers of puppy now have to follow USDA guidelines. The HSUS helped to block a legal challenge to this ruling.

    Better protections are in place for animals suffering through experiments in labs.

    The World Trade Organization is thankfully supporting European Union’s ban on products resulting from the horrific Canadian seal hunts.

    The wolf hunts were stopped in Michigan.

    New York and New Jersey became the first states to banned the sale of Ivory. This one should become a federal ban.

    And Pacelle states the “…  International Court of Justice ruled that Japan’s Southern Ocean whaling program violates the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling’s ban on commercial hunting.”

    Read Pacelle’s full rundown at the link above.

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    More evidence on fracking hazards

    December 15th, 2014 No Gravatar

    Big Oil and Gas want us all to believe that fracking is perfectly safe and it won’t pollute the water. We’re supposed to take their word for it, the way people were supposed to take the cigarette manufacturers word for decades, on how safe their products are.

    People in North Texas are getting sick and the industry is brushing aside any possible link.  A second Center for Public Integrity article includes information about a new, peer-reviewed study, published by the journal – Environmental Health.

    David O. Carpenter is the paper’s senior author and is the director of the University at Albany’s Institute for Health and the Environment. He is quoted as saying, “The implications for health effects are just enormous.”

    And the dangers don’t stop in the water. One study found “benzene, formaldehyde or other toxic substances” in the air in fracking zones. The monitoring was conducted in Arkansas, Colorado, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wyoming.

    That second article linked above cites studies with findings that should be cause for concern for everyone. One showed people living less than two-thirds of a mile from natural-gas wells were experiencing more skin and upper-respiratory problems.

    We should all be concerned with finding more congenital heart defects in babies and benzene found in air samples here some West Virginia wells.

    We all know the chemicals are dangerous, but the fracking industry just can’t believe that something so profitable could be a concern for the public.

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    Florida has one really messed up criminal justice system

    December 13th, 2014 No Gravatar

    A news story concerning a convicted dog fighter appeared this week on the Pack News Wire. The Highlands Today article reported on the recent conviction of a man charged with dogfighting.

    What he did to the dogs is horrible and the soft punishment he will receive makes matters far more atrocious. It seems a criminal in Florida must amass 22 so-called points on their record before they are sentenced to prison time.

    The story notes the man had only 4.5 points last year when he was convicted of a felonly for attending a dog fight (which could have led to a maximum of five years behind bars) and resisting arrest. He also has a drunk-driving conviction on his record, along with other crimes.

    So he is a long way from going to prison. What does it take to get major points in Florida? What does it take the court system there to decide the safety of the innocent comes first?

    The courts and the state legislature has announced to the nation’s criminals that – “if you want get-out-of-jail free points, just come on down to Florida, where you are welcome to commit multiple major crimes with impunity. And we’ll gladly let you know when you’re close to amassing too many points.

    “Hey, we’ve even got a phone app called ‘Crime Points,’ where you’ll receive a free text message when you reach 18.

    “Want to fight dogs here? – Well don’t worry. It’s gonna take you at least a good six convictions or more in criminal-friendly Florida, before you have to actually serve time. And that’s just if you’re caught.

    “We have a host of criminals on staff who have been let off free and clear by juries. They will counsel you on how to beat your rap. We want to be the customer-friendly criminal justice system.

    “So come on down to Florida. We’re not really the sunshine state.”

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    North Carolina officially drops the use of shelter gas chambers

    December 11th, 2014 No Gravatar

    There’s some very good news out of my home state of North Carolina. The Department of Agriculture has served notice to county municipal animal shelters that the use of gas chambers is no longer acceptable.

    A vast majority of the state’s shelters had already stopped using gas chambers of horror to euthanized homeless pets. A WUNC article from December 9 reports the new standards in North Carolina match recommendations from the American Veterinary Medical Association, Humane Society of the United States and American Humane Association.

    The AVMA changed its stance on gas chambers in 2013.

    Because we know animals experience emotional as well as physical suffering, it makes the use of gas chambers particularly cruel. The animals certainly experience fear when they are stuffed into the dark chambers and then experience respiratory distress once the gas is turned on, until the end finally comes.

    Too often, a group of animals are stuffed inside for a mass killing.

    It is a horrible way to die. The only acceptable method to euthanize an animal is through injection. I long for the day when shelters no long euthanize animals. If only more more people understood the importance of sterilization and the importance of caring for their pets as a lifelong commitment.

    The policy in North Carolina goes into effect on February 15 of 2015.

    Wayne Pacelle of Humane Society of the wrote about the news on his Humane Nation blog.

    The HSUS produced this map showing the current map of where gas chambers are used or have been banned:

    HSUS-gas-chamber-map

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    Purchasing poaching products particularly putrid

    December 9th, 2014 No Gravatar

    Those who are buying products made from elephant tusks or rhino horns or any other threatened or endangered species are the root cause of the horrors of poaching.

    And now we know that terrorists are funding their operations in part through poaching. So anyone who purchases ivory now or rhino horn products or any poached items have become promoters of terrorists.

    Let’s go ahead and tell it like it is. Too many people in countries like China and Vietnam are buying these products in full support of the terrorists. And clueless people in the United States are supporting the horrors too. A 2008 study showed the US is the No. 2 market for ivory.

    Are some people here in the US – supposedly the most advanced of nations – really that uneducated? Stop – You don’t need to tell me. I know … I know. It’s true.

    It is pure evil in every way. Poaching is driving animals to extinction and killing innocent people in staggering numbers. And it is driven by clueless people who either wrongly believe rhino horns have medicinal value or are so vain and stupid that they value a trinket over the lives of innocent people and animals.

    It’s sick and it’s evil.

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    Release: Born Free USA Responds to Fatal Trapping of Three Family Dogs in Wyoming

    December 8th, 2014 No Gravatar

    From Born Free US press release:

    “” “”
    St. Bernard dogs tragically strangulated by “legally” set snares

    December 8, 2014 – Last week near Casper, Wyoming, three dogs from the same family were killed by traps set out for wildlife. Born Free USA, a global leader in wildlife conservation and animal welfare, reports that this tragedy is far too common around the country. According to the organization’s online non-target trapping incident database, three other pet dogs have been caught in traps in Wyoming this year, adding to the hundreds of thousands of unintended trapping deaths and injuries across the United States.

    Snare traps that killed the three St. Bernard dogs were legal, according to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. Wyoming has a grade of D+ on Born Free USA’s State Trapping Report Card, which gives an academic letter grade to each state based on its animal trapping regulations that have the greatest impact on animal welfare, wildlife conservation, and public safety.

    According to Adam M. Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA, “This senseless incident is a disturbing example of how nonselective these deadly traps are. We have seen time and time again what happens when people set these traps for wild animals. They catch, maim, torture, and kill not only wild animals like coyotes, fox, raccoons, and mink to feed the fur industry, but also domestic  animals — people’s beloved companion dogs and cats. Trapping is indiscriminate and cruel to animals, and a very serious public safety and conservation issue. I continue to be mystified as to how this antiquated cruelty can happen in America as we approach 2015.”

    Trapping is largely unregulated across the United States. Roberts adds, “Fur trapping dates back to the early 1600s and has hardly changed. It remains barbaric, and many people are not even aware that this is happening in neighborhoods with pets and children.”

    Born Free USA is a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade. Born Free USA brings to America the message of “compassionate conservation”—the vision of the U.K.-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film Born Free, along with their son Will Travers. Born Free’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally. More at www.bornfreeusa.org, www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, and www.facebook.com/bornfreeusa.

    “” “”

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    Horrible Headlines of the Month: Greyhound Racing and Horse Racing

    December 8th, 2014 No Gravatar

    It is commonplace to see really clueless headlines over really clueless articles, especially where greyhound racing and horse racing and other animal industries are concerned.

    I’ve gone back over some recent alerts that have popped up on the Pack News Wire.

    Welcome to the brave new world of greyhound racing at Towcester” – by Northampton Chronicle & Echo.

    This one is about a new greyhound racing stadium in the UK. So while the news out of this industry is extremely troubling for the welfare of the dogs, here we have a brand new facility where uninformed people go to gamble on a blood sport.

    Can Texas horse racing be a winner again?” – by Star-Telegram.

    To answer their question – No, not for the horses who will die, some after being shipped off to be slaughtered.

    The article quotes the president of the National Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association as saying, “Texas horse racing right now is in trouble.”

    That’s actually really good news for horses.

    Christmas Comes Early For Kel and Keybow” – Australian Racing Greyhound.com.

    It’s an article concerning the performance of a dog in a recent race. Kel refers to the dog’s “owner.”

    Unfortunately, the blessings of Christmas can only come to Keybow if he is rescued from greyhound racing.

    AND we have another article (if you can call it that) out of Australia where a National Greyhound Welfare Strategy is being developed by the greyhound racing industry.

    I’m not trusting the dog racing industry to be the one to develop welfare standards.

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    Wildlife killing contest could move forward

    December 8th, 2014 No Gravatar

    Defenders of Wildlife and the Center for Biological Diversity are sending out alerts related to a proposed wildlife killing contest on federal lands.

    A lawsuit and letter campaign was launched back in November by the Center for Biological Diversity and other groups. The Bureau of Land Management pulled a permit to hold the contest in Idaho.

    The targets are wolves, coyotes and other animals. And now the hunting group wants to move the contest to national forests for January.

    This is not “wildlife management.” This is an excuse to have a killing spree.

    The CFBD page is HERE. Defenders of Wildlife has a page set up to send comments to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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    NJ Gov. Christie’s veto of bill to free pigs from gestation crates is misguided

    November 28th, 2014 No Gravatar

    Maybe misguided isn’t the right word for New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s veto today of a popular bill that would ban gestation crates at pig farms.

    Polling indicates New Jersey residents overwhelmingly support a ban on these crates and the bill passed with solid support from Republicans and Democrats in the State House and Senate. Gestation crates are cruel on an extreme level.

    Yet, the Associated Press quotes Christie as saying the bill is a “solution in search of a problem.”

    So I amend my headline. Christie’s veto and his stated reasoning for issuing the veto fall under the category of uneducated, wrongheaded, heartless and pure, blind politics.

    I wrongly considered Christie could be an independent thinker at times and might be one to brush off political pressure, especially in cases where the citizens of his state clearly and overwhelmingly supported an issue. In this case, the governor has caved to corporate puppet masters. He put the will of the power brokers above the will of the people and the side of compassion.

    PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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