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[04/22/04]: Happy Earth Day!!!

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  • Mark Sutton
    Howdy! Welcome to the 36th Edition of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter! Howard s come back from his travels to Chicago ( Peaceable Kingdom Premiere ), the San
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 22, 2004
      Howdy! Welcome to the 36th Edition of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter!

      Howard's come back from his travels to Chicago ("Peaceable Kingdom
      Premiere"), the San Francisco Vegetarian Society, the Beyond Pesticides
      Conference, and other activities, with over 60 new images from his digital
      camera for us to see.

      In this special issue of the Newsletter, in honor of Earth Day, you'll find
      a special "Online Earth Resources of Note" section (don't miss the
      "Minature Earth" animation, that shows what it would be like if the Earth
      were just a village of 100 people, and the Earth Observatory). You'll also
      get a link to the just-announced new FARM website "veggiesforecology"
      containing great info and resources. There's also a surprise section today
      for "Online Humor Resources" (check out the Bizarro cartoonist's great
      cartoons, products, and writings, as well as the unique "grinningearth"

      Even though we don't have the "Quick Bytes" references section this edition
      (usually with extra links on activism, diet, nutrition, veg'nism, etc.),
      there are extra articles on the environment (including how "junking oil"
      makes economic sense, drugs grown in rice approved, and how Farming is
      devastating to the global envirionment). Reading further, you'll find a
      landmark study on strict diets and overall health, 8 Rules for living
      longer (by a Cancer Expert), how "cow burps" are being studied (and why),
      and know that a clever vegan avoided dissecting a pig through an approved
      "virtual pig" online.

      Finally, don't miss the announcement/links for the 1st Interactive Vegan
      Television Cooking Show, how McDonald's isn't defining vegetarianism, news
      about the upcoming AR2004 Conference, and our own Mad Cow Info Round-up (a
      battle on testing is a'brewin', and a new book "Dying for a Hamburger").

      As always special nod of the hat to our new subscribers. Y'all can read
      past issues of the newsletter at:

      Special best wishes for everyone for a Great Earth Day... and has Howard
      puts it, "every day is Earth Day." Let's make it so...... Regards, Mark


      00: Quotes of Note
      01: New Pix from Howard's Digital Camera
      02: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      03: Mad Cow Info Round-up
      04: Online Earth Resources of Note
      05: Killing Seas, Farming Global Threat, Junk Oil, Drugs in Rice
      06: Online Humor Resources of Note
      07: Obesity/Diet Studies Breakthru, McDonald's Change, Life Rules
      08: Cow Burps, "Virtual Pig," Tiger Epidemic, AR2004 Conference
      09: Green Tea/Cancer, Szechuan'd Pests, Veg TV!, Food for Thought
      10: Howard's Schedule
      11: Donations to the Mad Cowboy Documentary
      12: Closing Thought(s)

      *00: Quotes of Note
      "Do you realize that the United States of America, we are putting more
      pesticides and fertilizer on our lawns than all of the fertilizer that is
      used to grow crops in India? You know the percent of weed killer in urban
      areas is astronomically higher than that rate that is used in agriculture.
      These are the things that we need to think about. Lets start making some
      good decisions, lets start talking about public transportation. Lets talk
      about not putting chemicals on our parks where our children are playing.
      Lets talk about buying our products that are not being in the need of going
      to waste. These are things that we can do. Each and every one of us can
      do something so that we have a more viable future for our children and

      I will say to you today that every time we bring out our wallet, every time
      we spend a dollar, we're voting on our future. The fork is the most
      dangerous weapon in the arsenal of the Homo sapiens. We are not only eating
      our planet; we are killing ourselves with what we are purchasing today. I
      say to you today, when you go and you shop, take a look at the teachings of
      the bible that say my people will eat from the garden. Only some fast food
      restaurants believe that we have things called hamburger trees. Join with
      me, let's go buy better, let's think more, let's save the world. Let's do
      it today."

      - Howard Lyman (excerpted from 3ABN 2002 "Earth Talk" video segments)

      *01: New Pix from Howard's Digital Camera
      [Howard's travels in late March/early April:

      [Info related to Howard's Pix:
      SF Veg Society: http://www.sfvs.org/
      Hulu House: http://www.vegdining.com/GetRest.cfm?rk=US-CA-SF-HULUH
      Michelle Simon: Center for Informed Food Choices:
      Beyond Pesticides: http://www.beyondpesticides.org/main.html
      Maggie Mudd's Vegan Ice Cream: http://www.maggiemudd.com/index.asp
      Peaceable Kingdom: http://www.tribeofheart.org/pk.htm
      George Eisman: http://people2.clarityconnect.com/webpages5/g.eisman/
      Chicago Diner: http://www.veggiediner.com/

      *02: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      "What is the world's most popular fruit?"

      Congratulations to Dale Stevenson, of La Porte, Indiana, who correctly
      guessed "tomatoes." He won the luck of the random draw among the those who
      got it right.

      ["The tomato is the world's most popular fruit. And yes, just like the
      brinjal and the pumpkin, botanically speaking it is a fruit, not a
      vegetable. More than 60 million tons of tomatoes are produced per year, 16
      million tons more than the second most popular fruit, the banana. Apples
      are the third most popular (36 million tons), then oranges (34 million
      tons) and watermelons (22 million tons)."

      "Only four animals step with both legs on either side when walking or
      running. Two of them are the camel and the maned wolf. Name one of the
      other two."

      Please e-mail guesses to: webmaster@... with the word "contest"
      in your subject line by NLT May 6th.

      [Many thanks to Joe Connelly, Editor, VegNews, who has offered a FREE
      one-year subscription to a winner chosen at random those submitting the
      correct answer to each MC Newsletter's Contest. Our thanks to Joe, and you
      can learn more about VegNews at:

      http://www.vegnews.com or e-mail: editor@... or call 1.415.665.6397]

      *03: Mad Cow Info Round-up
      ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE: "Dr. Murray Waldman, in collaboration with writer
      Marjorie Lamb, sets out to show that Alzheimer's is, indeed, a deadly
      modern plague. They present startling evidence that Alzheimer's is one of a
      family of diseases caused by a malformed protein - or prion - that also
      causes mad cow disease and its human variant, Cruetzfeld-Jakob disease
      (CJD). Could Alzheimer's, like CJD, be caused by tainted beef? In this
      compelling exposition, the authors come to a frightening conclusion about
      our seemingly insatiable hunger for hamburger.

      "Before about 1900 Alzheimer's disease did not exist, or if it did, was so
      rare as not to be noticed. But just over a hundred years ago, Alzheimer's
      disease was unknown, and most people did not know anyone who exhibited the
      symptoms of dementia that are now all too familiar to the families and
      friends of victims. Alzheimer's disease (AD) now afflicts 15 million people
      around the world, including 250,000 Canadians and 4.5 million Americans.
      One in 10 persons over 65 and nearly half of those over 85 have the
      disease. More significantly, the number of people with dementia is
      expected to increase steadily over the next 25 years: in Canada, 10,000 new
      cases of AD are diagnosed each year - 27 cases per day."

      [Edited from the book summaries and the excerpt below:

      FIVE CJD DEATHS IN NORTH N.J. IN 15 MONTHS: (03/24/04): "A 62-year old
      man in Northern New Jersey has died from a brain disorder that appears to
      be Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which, if confirmed, would be the fifth case
      of the rare disease in a little over a year in a two-county area, United
      Press International has learned. The possible CJD cluster is associated
      with the Garden State Race Track in Cherry Hill, where as many as 13 CJD
      deaths might have occurred among employees and patrons who ate at the now
      defunct track. Both variant CJD and the spontaneously occurring form of the
      disease -- called sporadic CJD or simply CJD -- are incurable conditions
      that degenerate the brain and ultimately cause death.

      This would be an unusually high number for a uncommon disorder that is
      thought to occur at the rate of only one case per 1 million population per
      year. The combined population of the two counties is approximately
      789,000, so they would expect to see no more than one case of sporadic CJD
      in that time frame. According to DHSS figures, which go back to 1979, the
      two counties have never experienced two CJD cases in the same year -- let
      alone five."

      [Very edited from:

      FOUND : (02/24/04): "The federal government fell short of its goal for
      mad-cow tests last year in the Northwest, where the nation's first case of
      the brain-wasting disease was found just before Christmas. The U.S.
      Department of Agriculture's surveillance plan said it would take at least
      1,205 tests to adequately monitor the five-state area, which includes
      Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Utah. But the agency collected only
      781 samples, less than two-thirds of the target.

      ... At Vern's Moses Lake Meats, the slaughterhouse where the infected cow
      was killed, no animals have been tested since Dec. 24, co-owner Tom
      Ellestad said. "USDA requested us to stop taking samples," he said.
      Ellestad didn't know why USDA made the request."

      [Very edited from:

      USDA ESTIMATES MAD COW TEST COSTS: (04/07/04): "The U.S. government's
      plans to make beef safe from mad cow disease could cost the industry up to
      $150 million a year, the Agriculture Department said Wednesday and
      indicated it was open to amending the proposed rules. After finding the
      first and only U.S. case of mad cow disease in December, the USDA issued a
      series of interim rules to further protect food from the brain-wasting
      disease. Among the rules imposed in January to prevent the spread of bovine
      spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE, was a ban on the use of so-called downer
      cattle in food. These are animals either too sick or too injured to walk.

      The USDA also issued stricter measures to ensure tissue from the nervous
      system, like the spinal cord, do not contaminate meat produced by hydraulic
      pressure equipment, also known as advanced meat recovery systems.

      In a report published on Wednesday, the USDA estimated these two
      regulations would cost the industry up to $150 million annually. "Price
      impacts are expected to be limited to beef by-products and variety meats
      which constitute a small share of domestic beef consumption," USDA said.
      The USDA estimated about 213 million pounds of beef will be affected by the
      rules annually. Total U.S. beef output this year was pegged at 25.28
      billion pounds."

      [Edited from the article also containing countries' testing statistics at:

      MAD COW DISEASE MAY HAVE SPREAD INTO SHEEP: (04/08/04): "Scientists have
      detected the first signs that bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) may
      have crossed into sheep in a study that is likely to rekindle anxieties
      over the safety of lamb and mutton. One of three tests used to determine
      whether sheep that had seemingly died from scrapie were in fact infected
      with BSE (also known as "mad cow" disease) has produced positive results.
      The four-year-old animal was thought to have developed scrapie, a brain
      disorder that affects sheep and is believed to be harmless to humans.

      It was always theoretically possible for sheep to be infected with BSE
      because they were once fed the same infected material that had spread the
      brain disease in cattle during the 1980s and early 1990s. But there is no
      simple test to distinguish BSE from sheep scrapie, and sheep experimentally
      infected with BSE show the same symptoms as scrapie, which means that
      scrapie in the field could be masking a hidden BSE epidemic in sheep.
      Experiments suggest that BSE could be easily transmitted to sheep, and it
      could, like scrapie, be passed down the generations. This would mean that
      BSE could still be infecting the national flock today, more than a decade
      after meat and bonemeal was banned."

      [Edited from:

      Agriculture Department will not allow American beef companies to
      independently test their cattle for mad cow disease to appease Japanese
      concerns, an agency official said on Friday. The USDA rejected a request
      by Creekstone Farms Premium Beef to allow 100 percent testing for the
      brain-wasting disease, a step the privately owned company deemed necessary
      to resume trade with Japan.

      "The use of the test as proposed by Creekstone would have implied a
      consumer safety aspect that is not scientifically warranted," said USDA
      Undersecretary Bill Hawks in a statement. The USDA has repeatedly said
      Japan's demand for 100 percent testing was not scientifically justified.
      U.S. Vice President Richard Cheney was expected to raise the issue when he
      visits Japan next week.

      Creekstone, which sells 20 percent of its beef to Japan, said it was
      considering taking legal action against USDA and would make a decision
      early next week. "We firmly disagree with USDA," said John Stewart,
      Creekstone's chief executive. The company had already spent hundreds of
      thousands of dollars building a private laboratory at its Arkansas City,
      Kansas, beef plant in anticipation of winning government approval. Japan's
      three-month ban costs Creekstone up to $100,000 daily in lost sales, the
      company said. About 50 workers have been laid off."

      [Edited from:

      Department of Agriculture refused yesterday to allow a Kansas beef producer
      to test all of its cattle for mad cow disease, saying such sweeping tests
      were not scientifically warranted. Lobbying groups for cattle ranchers and
      slaughterhouses applauded the decision, but consumer advocates denounced
      it, saying the department was preventing Creekstone from taking extra steps
      to prove its product was safe. Under the Virus Serum Toxin Act of 1913, the
      department decides where cattle can be tested and for what.

      Consumer groups accused the department of bending to the will of the beef
      lobby, saying producers do not want the expense of proving that all cattle
      are safe or the damage to meat sales that would result if more cases of mad
      cow are found. "It is ironic in the extreme that an administration that's
      so interested in letting industry come up with its own solutions would come
      down with a heavy government hand on a company that's being creative," said
      Dr. Peter Lurie, deputy director of the health research group at Public
      Citizen, a frequent food industry critic.

      The president of the American Meat Institute, which represents
      slaughterhouses, and the director of regulatory affairs at the National
      Cattlemen's Beef Association, which represents ranchers, praised the
      decision. Gary Weber of the cattlemen's association called 100 percent
      testing misleading to consumers because it would create a false impression
      that untested beef was not safe. He compared it to demanding that all cars
      be crash tested to prove they are safe. Asked if beef producers did not
      want to be pressured to imitate Creekstone and pay for more tests, Mr.
      Weber said it was "absolutely not about the money."

      [Very edited from:

      BEEF PACKER TO FIGHT USDA ON BSE TESTING: (4/12/04): "Creekstone Farms
      Premium Beef LLC said it will "aggressively challenge USDA's decision" late
      last week not to allow Creekstone to voluntarily test all the cattle it
      processes for bovine spongiform encephalopathy. The company said that
      since it asked USDA Feb. 19 for permission to privately test beef at the
      company's Arkansas City, Kans., plant, company officials have held "ongoing
      meetings" with USDA officials but the USDA announcement "came as a surprise
      to the company."

      "We are extremely disappointed but nonetheless relieved to finally have a
      response from the USDA," said John Stewart, Creekstone chief executive
      officer, in a company news release. "We now know where USDA stands but are
      surprised it took them six weeks to respond with a 'no' to our request."
      Stewart said his company hasn't ruled out legal action as it considers
      options to challenge USDA's authority. "We have a back-up strategy in place
      and over the weekend we will be finalizing our plans, which we will unveil
      early next week," Stewart said in the release.

      Creekstone said it has built "one of the best laboratories in the country
      inside of our processing plant to perform BSE testing," said Steward. "We
      have the equipment in place and staff trained to perform these tests. The
      company plans to use a test made by BioRad, a company based in Hercules,
      Calif., to test the animals; that's the same test the French and Japanese
      use to test all their animals, said the company."

      [Edited from:

      Department of Agriculture decision to block a private company from testing
      all its cattle under 30 months of age for mad cow disease runs contrary to
      its own records that show it has tested more than 2,000 animals in that age
      range, United Press International has learned. In announcing the decision
      to reject Creekstone's proposal, Bill Hawks, USDA's undersecretary for
      marketing and regulatory programs, said, "There is no scientific
      justification for 100 percent testing because the disease does not appear
      in younger animals" under the age of 30 months.

      The department's mad cow testing records, however, which were obtained by
      UPI via the Freedom of Information Act, show over the past two years the
      agency tested 2,051 animals -- and possibly more -- that were under the age
      of 30 months. "That's so hypocritical," said Michael Hansen, senior
      research associate with Consumers Union, the advocacy group in Yonkers,
      N.Y. "It makes it difficult for the USDA to argue to Creekstone, 'We only
      test animals above 30 months,' when USDA itself tests animals as young as 3
      months old."

      Consumers Union, along with 12 other advocacy groups -- including Public
      Citizen and the Creutzfeldt Jakob Disease Foundation -- sent USDA a letter
      Monday urging it to reverse its position on the Creekstone proposal, as
      well as to expand its surveillance program to include animals under 30
      months old. Hansen said he would like to see the testing program amended
      to include animals as young as 20 months because infected animals of that
      age have been detected in Japan and two animals under the age of 30 months
      have tested positive for mad cow in Europe."

      [Very edited from the long article at:

      *04: Online Earth Resources of Note
      [A fascinating animation (text-based version, too): "If the Earth were 100

      [The BEST Earth data images on the 'net:

      [Near-real time satellite views of over 80% of the Earth:

      [The Sustainable Village (over 10,000 products):

      [Earth Day Activities all week:

      [Various activities, info sources, & campaigns:

      [Greenpeace International:

      ["Friends of the Earth is the US voice of an influential, international
      network of grassroots groups in 70 countries:"

      ["Earthwatch Institute engages people worldwide in scientific field
      research and education to promote the understanding and action necessary
      for a sustainable environment:"

      ["Earth911: recycling centers, water pollution, and conservation:"

      ["EarthJustice: Because the Earth Needs a Good Lawyer:"

      ["Youth for a Change:"

      ["Earth Share is a nationwide network of responsible non-profit
      environmental and conservation organizations:"

      ["EARTHscope: interactive geo-stories about the state of the Earth, our
      communities, and possible futures:"

      ["The Earth Day Groceries Project, one of the oldest/largest educational
      projects on the Internet. "

      ["Tips on Greener Computing:"

      [Ideas for environmentally-sound lifestyle choices:

      ["Interviews with the 2004 winners of environmentalism's top prize:"

      [FARM's new website about the adverse impacts of animal agriculture on
      forests and other wildlife habitats, wildlife, water supplies, water
      quality, air quality, and food supplies:

      ["Support the Climate Stewardship Act"- Petition by May 1st:

      *05: Killing Seas, Farming Global Threat, Junk Oil, Drugs in Rice
      "Inefficient farming practices are helping to drive deforestation,
      pollution, ocean degradation and species loss, and constitute the most
      serious environmental threat in the world today, according to a new global
      survey by Dr. Jason Clay, head of the Center for Conservation Innovation at
      World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and noted expert on the economics of
      agriculture.... Clay finds that agriculture uses more than 50 percent of
      the habitable area of the planet, including land that should not be farmed,
      and destroys some 100,000 square miles of forests and other critical
      species habitat annually.

      Among the findings: Agriculture wastes 60 per cent, or 1,500 trillion
      liters, of the 2.5 trillion liters of water that it uses each year. Water
      resources are already being used close to or beyond their limit,
      particularly in the Americas, North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, China,
      and India. The impacts of global warming are likely to further disrupt
      water supplies. "Agriculture has had a larger environmental impact than
      any other human activity and today it threatens the very systems we need to
      meet our food and fiber needs," said Clay. "New kinds of agriculture can
      produce the food needed to feed an increasing population and still
      accommodate all other life forms on the planet."

      The book warns that government subsidies encourage intensive monoculture
      farming practices that use chemicals and heavy machinery that harm the
      environment. "U.S. farmers are on a treadmill: the more subsidies they
      receive, the more they need them to remain competitive globally," said
      Clay. The book recommends that governments work with farmers and the food
      industry to develop better management practices in order to increase
      efficiency and reduce damage to the environment."

      [Very edited from:

      [World Wildlife Fund:

      every sea creature across an area twice the size of Wales was asphyxiated
      by severely depleted oxygen levels in the Gulf of Mexico. The same
      phenomenon, the marine equivalent of the ozone hole, happened off South
      America, China, Japan, south-east Australia, New Zealand, and up to 150
      other places. A United Nations agency warned yesterday that the number of
      these "dead zones", caused mainly by the run-off of nitrogen fertilisers
      from intensive farming and sewerage from large cities, had doubled in the
      past 15 years and was increasing all over the world.

      "Humankind is engaged in a gigantic, global, experiment as a result of the
      inefficient and often over-use of fertilisers, the discharge of untreated
      sewage and the ever rising emissions from vehicles and factories," said
      Klaus Toepfer, the UN environment programme (UNEP) director. "The nitrogen
      and phosphorous from these sources are being discharged into rivers and the
      coastal environment or being deposited from the atmosphere, triggering
      these alarming and sometimes irreversible effects."

      "What is clear is that unless urgent action is taken to tackle the sources
      of the problem, it is likely to escalate rapidly," he said."

      [Edited from:

      "Europe's demand for beef made last year one of the worst ever for
      Amazonian deforestation, according to an international research report
      which quotes Brazilian government figures due to be released soon. Last
      year satellite pictures showed that almost 10,000 square miles of the
      world's largest continuous forest was lost, 40% more than in the previous

      The destruction is being driven by a growing demand for Brazilian beef in
      Europe because of the fear of mad cow disease and foot and mouth in
      European herds, yesterday's Cifor report says. "The deforestation is being
      fuelled by beef exports, with cattle ranchers making mincemeat out of the
      rainforests," said David Kaimowitz, director general of Cifor and one of
      the report's authors. He said that logging contributed only indirectly to

      [Very edited from:

      WAITER, THERE'S A DRUG IN MY RICE: (03/30/04): "The California Rice
      Commission on Monday approved a biotech company's request to grow the
      state's first crop genetically modified to contain a drug. The rice is
      genetically modified to produce two human proteins that fight infection:
      lactoferrin and lysozyme. Some rice growers and environmental groups oppose
      the project, saying the rice could contaminate regular crops and damage the
      export market.

      .... Ventria's proteins could be a big step forward in preventing
      infections in infants. Lactoferrin and lysozyme are present in breast milk,
      and protect babies from ear infections, diarrhea, respiratory tract
      infections, meningitis and other infections. But these protective proteins
      disappear when a baby stops breast feeding or doesn't receive breast milk
      at all. Researchers at Ventria were first to develop a human form of these
      proteins that could become therapies.

      Opponents say growing the crops in open fields endangers organic and
      conventional crops, as well as human health. "Even food-processing
      corporations are very upset about this as well, because they know all you
      need is one shipment of corn flakes that has a contraceptive in it and
      there's a real problem, obviously," Achitoff [Earthjustice, Hawaii] said.
      In 2002, federal officials ordered ProdiGene, of College Station, Texas, to
      burn 155 acres of corn and 500,000 bushels of soybeans because the crops
      had been contaminated by the company's pharmaceutical corn, which had been
      genetically engineered to produce an experimental diarrhea vaccine for pigs.

      [Very edited from:

      PLAN TO JUNK OIL, ADD JOBS: (04/14/04): "Using renewable sources to meet
      new energy needs would create three times as many jobs as relying on fossil
      fuels, UC Berkeley researchers said in a study issued Tuesday. The report
      from Berkeley's Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory fans a growing
      national debate over how to reduce America's dependence on imported oil.
      While the Bush administration wants Congress to approve an energy program
      that would, among other things, expand oil exploration in the United
      States, a coalition of environmental and labor groups, calling itself the
      Apollo Alliance, is pushing for federal incentives to promote wind, solar
      or biomass power plants.

      At a conference in Seattle on Tuesday that called for a federal push
      similar to the Apollo space program, UC Berkeley Professor Daniel Kammen,
      director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory, said up to
      240, 000 jobs could be created by 2020 if federal policies favor renewable
      sources. Building new coal and gas-fired plants would produce about 80,000
      jobs, he said.

      "Renewable energy is not only good for our economic security and the
      environment, it creates new jobs,'' Kammen said.

      [Very edited from:

      [Read about the Apollo Alliance at:

      EUROPE LEADING WORLD INTO AGE OF WIND ENERGY: (04/08/04): "Wind-generating
      capacity worldwide, growing at over 30 percent per year, has jumped from
      less than 5,000 megawatts in 1995 to 39,000 megawatts in 2003, an increase
      of nearly eight fold. Among fossil fuels, natural gas leads with an annual
      growth rate of just over 2 percent during the same period, followed by oil
      at less than 2 percent, and coal at less than 1 percent. Nuclear generating
      capacity expanded by 2 percent.

      The modern wind-generating industry was born in California during the early
      1980s, but the United States, which now has 6,300 megawatts of generating
      capacity, has fallen behind Europe in adopting this promising new
      technology. Germany overtook the United States in 1997; within Europe, it
      leads the way with 14,600 megawatts of generating capacity. Spain, a rising
      wind power in southern Europe, may overtake the United States in 2004. Tiny
      Denmark, which led Europe into the wind era with the development of its own
      wind resources, now gets an impressive 20 percent of its electricity from
      wind. It is also the world's leading manufacturer and exporter of wind

      The United States is lagging in developing wind energy not because it
      cannot compete technologically with Europe in manufacturing wind turbines
      but because of a lack of leadership in Washington."

      [Very edited from the statistic-filled article at:

      *06: Online Humor Resources of Note
      Q: Are any of McDonald's foods considered vegetarian?
      A: McDonald's does not represent any of their foods as being vegetarian."

      [The above is verbatim from:

      [U.S. Global Warming Fashion Guide:

      ["Saving the Earth One Joke at a Time" (info & humor):

      ["Energy & Environment: Cartoons, Jokes, & Political Satire:

      [Wonderful Funny AR & Vegan Cartoons, Essays, & Products:

      *07: Obesity/Diet Studies Breakthru, McDonald's Change, Life Rules
      blood vessels of children who are obese show changes that can lead to heart
      disease later in life. Now, new research shows that these changes can
      largely be reversed with diet and exercise. We were surprised that the
      children had developed (blood vessel) abnormalities at such a young
      age--and by how readily these could be reversed with simple lifestyle
      measures," researcher Dr. Kam S. Woo, from The Chinese University of Hong
      Kong, said in a statement.

      The findings are based on a study of 82 overweight children who were put on
      a low-fat diet alone or in combination with a structured exercise program
      for six weeks. After this period, all 41 kids in the diet-only group and 22
      of 41 in the diet-plus-exercise group continued their assigned regimens for
      1 year. At 1-year follow-up, further improvements in blood vessel function
      were seen in kids who continued the exercise program. Moreover, continued
      exercise had beneficial effects on blood vessel wall thickening and body
      fat content. Less dramatic benefits were seen in children who remained on
      the diet only."

      SOURCE: Circulation, April 6th online issue, 2004.

      [Edited from:

      [For abstract:

      STRICT DIETS 'CUT HEART DISEASE': (04/19/04): "Nutritious food improves
      health Stringent dieting can dramatically reduce the risk of heart disease,
      a study shows. Researchers at Washington University examined people who
      had curbed their calorie intake and avoided processed foods for a number of
      years. They were found to have the health of people decades younger, the
      study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences said. UK
      experts said even small adjustments to diet can improve people's health.
      The research suggests that long-term dieting can provide powerful
      protection against both heart disease and diabetes. Levels of "bad"
      cholesterol and triglyceride blood fats were very low in the people studied.

      And the group, whose average age was 50, had blood pressure readings
      similar to that of the average 10-year-old. They ate a wide variety of
      vegetables, fruits, nuts, dairy products, egg whites, wheat and soy
      proteins, and meat. They avoided all processed foods containing
      trans-fatty acids, as well as refined carbohydrates, desserts, snacks and
      soft drinks. Insulin concentrations - one of the markers of diabetes risk
      - were also as much as 65% lower than they were for people with a normal

      Dr Luigi Fontana, who also took part in the research, said: "These effects
      are all pretty dramatic. "For the first time, we've shown that calorie
      restriction is feasible and has a tremendous effect on the risk of
      atherosclerosis and diabetes."

      [Edited from:

      [Original & detailed press release about the above study:

      MCDONALD'S LAUNCHES HEALTHIER MENU: (04/15/04): "Coming soon to a
      McDonald's near you: flab-fighting Adult Happy Meals, featuring salad,
      bottled water, a pedometer and a little advice to walk more. The hamburger
      giant outlined plans Thursday for its "Go Active!" meals for grown-ups at
      all 13,500 of its U.S. restaurants May 6 along with other steps designed to
      make its fare - and its image - more healthy. A target of obesity lawsuits
      and a magnet for criticism that fast food is unhealthy, McDonald's Corp.
      also launched a marketing blitz to address health issues head-on and tout
      new diet-conscious options at its outlets.

      Michael Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the
      Public Interest, credited McDonald's with taking "some small steps in the
      right direction" Thursday but said they don't go nearly far enough. "If
      McDonald's wanted to improve the public's health, in addition to providing
      the salads and bottled water, it could stop using partially hydrogenated
      oils in its fries, which contain trans fats and are a powerful promoter of
      heart disease," he said. "They also could lower the fat content of their
      burgers, use lowfat cheese, provide more baked food instead of fried food
      and lower the sodium content of their foods."

      [Edited from:

      DOCTOR PRESCRIBES 8 RULES FOR LIVING WELL: (04/08/04): "Getting a pet and
      feeling a bond with that other living thing is just one of the eight
      commandments a Mayo Clinic cancer specialist outlines for living long and
      living well. In his search to discover which lifestyle practices keep
      patients out of his exam room, Dr. Edward Creagan believes he has found
      some answers, and he enumerates them in his book, "How NOT to Be My
      Patient: A Physician's Secrets for Staying Healthy and Surviving Any

      "The Fountain of Youth is not rocket science. It's more complicated than
      that," Creagan says. "It's on the sidewalks and bikeways of our country. It
      consists of physical activity, trying to maintain an ideal body weight,
      having positive and nurturing relationships, challenges to your sense of
      inner being and a sense of humor. "You need someone to love (even a pet),
      something to get you up in the morning, in other words, something to do
      that gives your life meaning, and something to look forward to."

      Seems simple enough, but most Americans follow few if any of his eight
      commandments. Here they are [very summarized]: Form stable long-term
      relationships, Maintain ideal body weight, Eat a plant-based diet, Engage
      in regular physical activity, Longevity does not allow for smoking, Use
      alcohol in moderation, Foster a sense of spirituality, [and] Find meaning
      and purpose in life.

      [Edited from:

      *08: Cow Burps, "Virtual Pig," Tiger Epidemic, AR2004 Conference
      government wants to get a better handle on whether cattle burps are having
      an impact on climate change. Environment Canada is launching a $50,000
      study to measure the amount of methane gas produced by cattle as they
      digest their food. The current belief is that cattle produce 19 megatonnes
      of greenhouse gas emissions per year in Canada, or about 3% of the
      country's total. But data from other countries has been used to make that
      estimate and Environment Canada officials suggest cattle in Canada could
      lead very different lives. To learn how much methane an animal emits,
      studies have used a variety of techniques. Some have measured methane gas
      emitted from dairy barn vents. Others have put a measuring device on
      animals' snouts. Some studies suggest the average cow produces as much
      greenhouse gas in a day as a car that is driven 3.2 kilometres."

      [Edited from:

      did more than let out a groan when she learned she had to dissect a fetal
      pig in her freshman biology class. She and her parents objected to school
      officials. Morgan Merrick, a vegan who eats no meat, dairy products or
      eggs, believes it is wrong to dissect frogs and fetal pigs in the name of
      science. She and her parents talked with a counselor on the day she was
      scheduled to start the dissection.

      By midday, Morgan and the school had worked out a compromise. She could
      perform a virtual fetal pig dissection, on the Internet. Morgan spent the
      next four days working independently in the library to complete her virtual
      dissection. She received a score of 85."


      BUFFALO NATIVE FIGHTS 'NATIONAL EPIDEMIC': (04/12/04): "There are an
      estimated 10,000 tigers in private hands in the United States alone - more
      than double the number remaining in the Asian wild. "People are breeding
      them illegally, selling them on the Internet, trading them at auctions,"
      Markarian said. Of course, few private owners have the training or
      facilities to handle these cats once they reach adulthood. "It's a
      difficult situation - a national epidemic," he said. The problem must be
      tamed by changing federal and state laws - and soon, said Markarian, who
      prepared for his life's work under the tutelage of Cleveland Amory, the
      author and animal advocate who founded the Fund for Animals in 1967.

      After Amory died in 1998, trustees of the not-for-profit organization named
      Markarian executive vice president. He became president in 2002. The fund
      is pushing for speedy enforcement of a new federal law banning interstate
      and foreign commerce in tigers, leopards, lions, cheetahs and other exotic
      animals and is urging states to stop such trading within their borders. A
      bill that would ban private ownership of exotic wildlife is pending in the
      State Legislature. "This is not only an animal welfare issue, but a public
      safety issue. If your neighbor has a tiger, that situation is a threat to
      the community," Markarian said.

      Today the Fund for Animals has 200,000 members and operates four refuges.
      The best known is Black Beauty Ranch outside Dallas, home to 1,300 rescued
      animals ranging from an abused circus elephant to primates rescued from
      medical labs to game animals discarded by trophy-hunting ranches."

      [Edited from the long article at:

      AR2004 CONFERENCE: JULY 8-12, 2004: "Animal Rights 2004 is the animal
      rights movement's annual national conference. It provides a forum for
      sharing knowledge, discussing strategies and tactics, networking, and
      "recharging our batteries." It is dedicated to exposing and challenging the
      terror perpetrated every day by our society against billions of innocent,
      sentient nonhuman animals. More than 80 animal rights leaders have been
      already signed. They include Steve Best, Lawrence Carter-Long, Karen
      Davis, Karen Dawn, Joan Dunayer, Caryn Ginsberg, Michael Greger, Tippi
      Hedren, Alex Hershaft, Steve Hindi, Kevin Jonas, Pattrice Jones, Elliot
      Katz, Greg Lawson, Howard Lyman, Jim Mason, Jack Norris, Lauren Ornelas,
      Dan Piraro, Sherry Schlueter, Paul Shapiro, Jerry Vlasak, Paul Watson, and
      Zoe Weil. Musical entertainment will be provided by Will Tuttle and Heidi

      The conference will be held on July 8-12 at the Sheraton Premiere Hotel in
      Vienna, VA, just outside the Washington Beltway. This facility is larger
      than previous ones and offers reduced room rates and more amenities,
      including free dog beds. Several new videos will be screened in the video
      theater. The program structure will be tighter than in past years,
      allowing more time for socializing and networking."

      [Take advantage of discounted rates by registering before April 30th at:

      [FARM Newsletter:

      *09: Green Tea/Cancer, Szechuan'd Pests, Veg TV!, Food for Thought
      GREEN TEA COMPONENT KILLS LEUKEMIA CELLS: (04/08/04): "A component of
      green tea helps kill cells of B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL),
      the second most common leukemia in American adults, according to new
      research. Mayo Clinic researchers found that the component, called
      epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), destroys leukemia cells by interrupting
      the communication signals they need to survive. CLL is most often diagnosed
      in people in their mid-to-late 60s. Chemotherapy is used to treat the most
      severe cases, but there is no cure for CLL."

      [Edited from:

      [Original study in Blood magazine online: 03/02/04:

      SZECHUAN PEPPER REPELS PESTS: (04/08/04): "Farmers could stop prairie
      voles from eating their crops by spraying extracts from Szechuan pepper
      around the plants. The hot sauce could deter animals that seem immune to
      other fiery chemicals, such as the capsaicin in chillies. Chemicals in the
      peppercorn-like plant sting the rodents' mouths and noses and send them
      looking for less painful foods, scientists report in the journal Pest
      Management Science.

      Capsaicin from chilli peppers is sometimes used to keep herbivores at bay.
      "People use hot sauce to protect ornamental shrubs or fruit trees from deer
      and elk, and it seems to work real well," says wildlife biologist Bill
      Andelt of Colorado State University, Fort Collins. The spicy brew is safe
      for plants and animals, he adds. But capsaicin has no effect on some
      hardier animals, such as mountain beavers that chomp up tree seedlings."

      [Edited from:

      First Interactive Vegan TV Series premieres Wednesday, April 21st at 11
      a.m. Eastern/ 8 a.m. Pacific on the Healthy Living Channel. VegTV is the
      first TV series specifically designed to help Americans switch to a
      healthier diet, to reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and a
      host of obesity related illnesses. On VegTV, award winning TV news
      journalist Jane Velez-Mitchell teams with best-selling cookbook author and
      nutrition expert Marie Oser to whip up delicious meals that are very low in
      fat, rich in fiber, and completely cholesterol-free. TV and movie stars,
      from Alicia Silverstone to James Cromwell, tell viewers why they have
      already made the switch to the vegetable based diet.

      VegTV uses only fruits, veggies, nuts, grains and legumes, with a special
      emphasis on soy, in the kitchen. Our recipes are totally free of meat,
      fish, eggs, dairy, and processed sugar. Viewers can download recipes, watch
      streaming videos, participate in on-line discussions and find all the
      products needed to switch to a healthier lifestyle on VegTv.com. VegTv
      airs every Wednesday at 11am Eastern/10am Central/9am Mountain and 8am
      Pacific on Healthy Living Channel available on Echostar's Dish Network
      Channel 223 and cable systems around the country. The hosts of this show
      are also its executive producers and are available for interviews."

      [Very edited from the Press Release at:

      FOOD FOR THOUGHT: (04/18/04): "If you pass up a fast food hamburger, the
      processing energy you save would equal about 20 miles worth of fuel for a
      car and water for 17 showers, environmentalists say. Raising animals for
      food requires more than one-third of all raw materials and fossil fuels
      used in the United States, say animal rights activists. [Stats from PETA]

      That's one of the reasons Meriam Corcoran has been a vegan, a vegetarian
      who uses no products derived from animals, for 13 years. Corcoran is a
      founding member of Veggies In Motion, a metro Detroit group seeking to
      spread news about the benefits of plant-based nutrition. Veggies in Motion
      was one of the many environmental groups that came out Saturday to help
      celebrate Earth Day at Mott Community College. Corcoran said if people
      want to be environmentally minded, they should consider their diets and the
      adverse affects of pollution caused from processing animals for food.

      "At one time people would come to our table and be nervous and
      confrontational," Corcoran said. "Now they are more open and curious."

      [Edited from:

      [More about "Veggie in Motion"and buncha neat vegan resources/activities at:

      *10: Howard's Schedule
      Apr 23 - 26: Ellensburg, WA > Central Washington University

      May 8: Philadelphia, PA > 6 pm (Conf. starts 930 am) - Philadelphia Ethical
      May 15 - 16: Santa Rosa, CA > McDougall Wellness Center

      June 26 - 27: Lodi, CA > (26th at 4 pm, 27th at 10:30 am) - "Health and
      Healing Crusade"

      Jul 8 - 11: WashDC (Viena, VA) > AR2004
      July 21-25: Johnstown, PA > Summerfest 2004

      Aug. 7-8: Watkin Glen, NY > Farm Sanctuary

      Sep 11, 12, 13: Kirtland, Ohio > Journey Expo '04

      Oct. 6: Bristol, RI > Roger Williams University

      [More details and contact info at:

      *11: Donations to the Mad Cowboy Documentary
      Both Mooshoes and VeganCats will donate 5% of sales accessed through the
      MadCowboy Home Page to the filming of the Mad Cowboy Feature Documentary.
      Check 'em out! Mooshoes sells much more than shoes, and VeganCats sells
      cruelty-free products for cats AND dogs!

      *12: Closing Thought(s)
      "Luck is the least of it. I think of the Earth as a living organism. The
      rocks, the air, the oceans, and all life are an inseparable system that
      functions to keep the planet livable. In fact, I now believe that life can
      exist only on a planetary scale. Can't have a planet with sparse life any
      more than you can have half a cat."

      - James Locklock (as quoted by Lawrence E. Joseph, "GAIA: The Growth of an
      Idea," p. 3. ISBN: 0-312-05866-7)

      "'Tis said that the views of nature held by any people determine all their

      - Ralph Waldo Emerson, English Traits

      Mark Sutton, Webmaster@... http://www.madcowboy.com
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