Friday, September 19


That's what a restaurant in Georgia is learning as its profitable business gets slammed with a food-poisoning lawsuit after a deadly salmonella outbreak. 17 people suffered the same strain of salmonellosis after eating at the restaurant recently, and one died. Four-year-old Allison B. Luster was rushed to the hospital on Aug. 23 with bloody stools, constant vomiting,severe stomach pain and a high fever. Perhaps bearing in mind recent news that many children who survive this kind of attack wind up with long-term kidney problems, the grandmother is suing for "medical bills, attorney fees and any other fees the court may deem appropriate." Boy, I'd like to do some deeming there.

Thursday, September 18


Government cost estimates of a new program that will require meat packages to be labeled with their countries of origin are "questionable and not well supported," congressional auditors said last week. [Sorry, I meant to get this up sooner.] The USDA said the cost of paperwork for the first year of the program would be $1.9 billion - but the GAO says the USDA "could provide no documentation to support its estimates," and it assumed an hourly rate of $50 for processors to develop and keep a record system, which was more than double the hourly rates it used in recent estimates for other programs. A Republican senator reminded us why this is important: Mike Enzi, R-Wyo said, "On shoes, they tell you what the country of origin is. On underwear they tell you what the country of origin is ... but I tell you those things that you wear can't hurt you nearly as much as the things you put in your body." If, that is, you put dead flesh into your body.

Wednesday, September 17


Monkeys in a food-handout experiment got enraged when treated unequally and threw their food out of the cage in protest. Kevin McCabe, who studies cooperation at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, US, says the results suggest that the ability to recognise unjust treatment is rooted in basic biological mechanisms. Too bad most humans are no longer able to recognize unjust treatment - like, say, keeping monkeys in cages for fun experiments like this.

Tuesday, September 16


That's the headline of Joel McNally's Capital Times column this week, in which he notes that the bloodthirsters' insistence on pushing through a dove hunt and posing for photos showing off their prowess at killing small birds probably did their cause much more harm than good. "Large beasts crashing around Wisconsin woods joyously blowing mourning doves out of the sky are like aging dinosaurs destroying their own habitat and hastening the day of their own extinction." Awww... it's Mourning in America!

Monday, September 15


Kayem Foods Inc, a Chelsea, Mass., firm, is voluntarily recalling approximately 9,230 pounds of ready-to-eat meat and poultry products suspected of being contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Whatever happened to that war on listeria, anyway?


Chronic wasting disease (CWD) isn't going awway, and it turns out that it spreads "more easily among deer herds than originally thought, particularly when animals cluster together during the winter, according to wildlife researchers in Colorado and Wyoming. ...Miller and Williams noted that concentrating deer in captivity or feeding them artificially (baiting) in the wild made transmission of the disease more likely." But even if hunters could give up deer-baiting, it still might not be enough: "Prions, the infectious proteins believed to be at the root of chronic wasting disease, stick to some soil types, suggesting the landscape may serve as a reservoir for chronic wasting disease," a study found. Great. Just great.