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CORRECTED VERSION: [05_14_04]: Veg Eye for Fat Guys, Signing Chimps Cam, Brains on BBQ

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  • Mark Sutton
    My apologies for this additional sending. There were some unforeseen errors in the original 37th issue sent this past Friday due to a new process of
    Message 1 of 1 , May 16, 2004
      My apologies for this additional sending. There were some unforeseen
      errors in the original 37th issue sent this past Friday due to a new
      process of composition, and they've all been corrected.

      This is the edition as was intended. Thanks for your patience. Best
      regards, Mark

      Howdy! Welcome to the 37th Edition of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter!

      Howard's returned to the U.S. mainland, and has brought back near 100
      pictures from his recent trips to Hawaii and Central Washington. There's
      also links below to some of the people he met with, and places he visited.

      In this issue, we have a large "Mad Cow Info Round-up" covering the many
      issues surrounding the USDA and a dead cow in Texas. As you read on,
      you'll learn about how the "low-carb" fad diet can injure your immune
      system, a study about your brain on BBQ, and why people should eat more
      walnuts. There's also information about a Vegetarian Iron Chef contest,
      PETA's new "Veg Eye for the Fat Guys" campaging, and a who's who of
      "meatless" celebreties.

      Down further, you'll learn about China approving GMO soy, that Monsanto has
      given up on GM wheat , how an Air Force Base is going green, and see
      several fun cartoons. We've also got stories about a judge demanding proof
      that an elephant is "happy," a battle for domain names with Neiman-Marcus,
      and the global impact of heart disease.

      ...and don't miss the American sign-language savvy chimpanzee live "web-cam!"

      As always, a tip of the hat to our new subscribers. Y'all can read back
      issues of the Newsletter at:

      Best wishes to everyone for a superb mid-Spring! Keep those plants hydrated.

      Regards, Mark (cicadas anyone?)


      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: Low Carb Risks, Your Brain On BBQ, Global Coronaries, Walnuts
      05: Moby Expands, Veg'n Iron Chef, Veg Eyes, Meatless Celebs
      06: Cartoons!
      07: China Goes GMO, Monsanto Quits, Eco Air Force, Lead-free Law
      08: Happy Elephant?, Fur Flies, Film Gala, Chimps Sign Online
      09: Upcoming Events of Note
      10: Quick Bytes
      11: Howard's Schedule
      12: Donations to the Mad Cowboy Documentary
      13: Closing Thought(s)

      *00: Quote(s) of Note
      "It is time for us as the consumer to realize that what is happening in the
      United States Department of Agriculture, what is happening with the
      inspection of our food has more to do with the political power that is
      there than what science says. Remember one hamburger today will contain
      the remains from over 1,000 animals.

      The USDA actually had a plant that they wanted to shut down because of the
      contamination. So they put out an order that said cease and desist. Close
      the door. Which when I was a kid, any inspector could have done that, but
      this slaughter facility actually went to court and beat USDA in court. The
      United States Department of Agriculture, the group that is overseeing our
      safety, does not today have the power to shut down someone that is putting
      out contaminated food.

      Back when President Lincoln came up with the Department of Agriculture, he
      gave them 2 messages. One of 'em was to promote agriculture. The second
      one was to end up making sure the food was safe. Today this mixed message
      has tremendous ramifications for us.

      We have 4 corporations today that control over 80% of the beef, pork, &
      chicken slaughter. The USDA's top brass comes from the industry that they
      are overseeing. Their goal is: don't rock the boat."

      - Howard Lyman (in 3ABN's "Earth Talk" Series, Sept. 2002)

      *01: New Pix from Howard's Digital Camera
      [Howard travels to Hawaii and Central Washington:

      ONLINE REFERENCES related to Howard's trip pix:

      [Charles Lindbergh's Gravesite:

      [Vegan Dr. Michael Klaper:

      [Sugar Factory and Equipment:

      [Iao Valley & the Needle (famour war site):

      [Sponsors of Howard's trip:

      [Koko Crater:

      [Vegan Dr. Pinckney's Healing Heart Foundation Website:

      [Vegan Dr. Bill Harris's website:

      [The New Strawbale Home:

      [Renewable Energy Project Policy disc. groups/info:

      [The Peace Cafe in Central Wash. info/articles:

      *02: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      "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."

      Congratulations to Ruth O'Donnell, El Cajon, CA., for correctly guessing
      and winning the luck of the draw!

      ["Cats step with both left legs, then both right legs when they walk or
      run. The only other animals to do this are the giraffe, camel and the maned

      "What percentage of the world's children (ages 5 - 17) are overweight?"

      Pick one: a) 5% b) 10% c) 15% d) 20% e) 25%

      Please e-mail guesses to: webmaster@... with the word "contest"
      in your subject line by NLT May 26th.

      [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
      USDA VETS: DOCUMENTS FALSIFIED FOR YEARS: (04/23/04): "The U.S. Department
      of Agriculture has pressured its veterinarians into falsifying official
      documents for as long as 20 years, former agency veterinarians told United
      Press International. The allegations come as a current USDA veterinarian
      and an attorney representing federal veterinarians have made similar
      charges about existing internal practices at the agency's Food Safety and
      Inspection Service.

      The veterinarian -- who requested anonymity because of feared repercussions
      from the agency -- and the attorney, Bill Hughes of the National
      Association of Federal Veterinarians, allege the present FSIS management
      takes retaliatory actions against veterinarian inspectors who do not obey
      orders from superiors to sign certificates that falsely assert certain food
      items are safe for export. In some cases, Hughes and the veterinarian
      charge, even though food items may violate those export requirements,
      veterinarian inspectors still are expected to sign the documents.

      Former veterinarians said the practice has been condoned in the agency for
      up to 20 years."

      [Edited from:

      [For another excellent, disturbing, and detailed account, see:

      Agriculture Minister Yoshiyuki Kamei said last week that Japan was sticking
      to its demand that the United States check all slaughtered cattle for mad
      cow disease as a prelude to resuming imports of U.S. beef. "It is
      important not to harm the confidence of consumers," Kamei told reporters
      after a Cabinet meeting. So far, Washington has refused Tokyo's demand
      that all cattle be tested, saying there is no scientific justification for
      such a costly measure. Japan is normally the top buyer of U.S. beef and
      the four-month ban has halted purchases that last year amounted to nearly
      $1.4 billion.

      The USDA reiterated this week that it would stand by its decision to
      prohibit Kansas-based meat packer Creekstone Farms Premium Beef from
      independently testing for mad cow disease so it could resume sales to

      [Edited from:

      senator is pressing Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman to reconsider her
      department's refusal to let U.S. beef producers do their own testing for
      mad cow disease. Nancy Kassebaum Baker, the wife of U.S. ambassador to
      Japan Howard Baker, said such testing could promote confidence in U.S. beef
      and help re-establish exports to countries that ban it now. Baker put her
      viewpoint in a letter to Veneman earlier this month. The Kansas Republican
      said she was stating her opinion as a private beef producer.

      A series of visiting U.S. delegations have failed to persuade Japan's
      government to lift a ban imposed on American beef imports after a single
      case of mad cow disease was detected in Washington state in late December.
      But the two countries agreed to try to narrow their differences by
      establishing a working group of experts. A Japanese foreign ministry
      official said the experts will try to establish "common ground" on
      technical issues. The panel will report by the end of the summer in hopes
      of resuming trade."

      [Edited from:

      BUSH WANTS TO OPEN BORDER TO CANADIAN BEEF: (04/30/04): "The U.S. border
      should be opened to Canadian live beef imports "as soon as possible,"
      President George W. Bush said Friday after talks with Prime Minister Paul
      Martin. Restrictions on the movement of beef were high on the list of
      trade issues Mr. Martin took to Washington for his first bilateral meeting
      with the U.S. President. Asked about beef imports by a Canadian reporter,
      Mr. Bush said that he wanted to treat the issue on a scientific, not
      political basis. "My administration is committed to a policy of free trade
      when it comes to beef," Mr. Bush said. "It's in our nation's interest that
      live beef be moving back and forth."

      Earlier this month the U.S. Department of Agriculture lifted an 11-month
      ban on certain Canadian beef products. They ruled that import permits would
      now cover all edible beef products from cattle under 30 months old."

      [Edited from:

      Wednesday abruptly rescinded an unannounced policy shift that allowed the
      widespread sale of hamburger and other beef products from Canada. The
      turnaround came 10 days after a federal judge in Montana upbraided the
      agency for disregarding basic regulatory procedures and possibly
      jeopardizing public health. Under its April 19 policy shift, which was
      posted on the USDA Web site without comment, the agency had expanded the
      list of allowed beef products from Canada to include ground beef, beef with
      bones, tongue, and liver. Those parts of the animal had been banned or
      restricted out of concern they could spread the infection that causes mad
      cow disease, which was detected in Canada last year.

      "It is troubling to the Court how USDA could believe it is appropriate
      procedure to authorize all imports of bovine meat products from Canada,
      through the April 19, 2004 memorandum, at the very same time when USDA is
      in the middle of a rulemaking to determine whether to take such a step,"
      Cebull [U.S. District Court Judge Richard Cebull in Billings, Montana]
      wrote. The lawsuit against the USDA was brought by the Ranchers Cattlemen
      Action Legal Fund (R-CALF), a nonprofit group representing cattle ranchers.
      CEO Bill Bullard said that his group filed suit because it was concerned
      that health and safety rules to protect against mad cow disease were being
      ignored. "The USDA jumped outside the rulemaking process and made
      decisions that were not based on science.""

      [Very edited from (free registration required):

      USDA INVESTIGATING CONDEMNED TEXAS COW: (05/01/04): "The U.S. Department
      of Agriculture did not test a head of cattle in Texas that displayed
      central nervous symptoms even though such symptoms could be associated with
      mad cow disease, USDA officials said on Friday. The department is
      collecting information on the Texas animal, USDA spokeswoman Alisa Harrison
      said on Friday, emphasizing there is no evidence yet that the animal may
      have had mad cow disease.

      "We do know that the animal was condemned and it didn't go into the meat
      supply," Harrison said. Harrison added that early indications were that
      there "were not any samples taken" from the animal. Asked whether any
      tissue samples, such as from the animal's brain, were still available for
      testing, Harrison said, "I do not know." Harrison said federal inspectors
      in Texas were being interviewed about the condemned animal. "We have to go
      back and figure out exactly what happened and what the real situation is or
      isn't," she said.

      Beverly Boyd, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Agriculture, said the
      condemned carcass in San Angelo was not held back for testing. "There were
      no tissue samples taken. It was not tested at all," she told Reuters.
      Caroline Smith DeWaal, food safety director for the Center for Science in
      the Public Interest, questioned why USDA may have failed to test the
      condemned animal. "If they're not testing the cattle most highly
      recommended for testing, it would appear USDA is not really looking to find
      the problem where it may exist," DeWaal said."

      [Very edited from:

      federal government's mad cow testing procedure was violated when a
      condemned cow in Texas was sent to a rendering plant before tissue samples
      could be collected for testing, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on
      Monday. A USDA veterinarian at a Lone Star Beef plant in San Angelo, Texas
      condemned the animal "after observing the cow stagger and fall, indicating
      either an injury or potentially a central nervous system disorder or other
      health condition," USDA said.

      USDA said no part of the animal, killed on April 27, entered the human food
      chain. "Standard procedures call for animals condemned due to possible CNS
      (central nervous system) disorder to be kept" until federal officials
      collect samples for testing, the USDA said. "However, this did not occur in
      this case," according to a USDA statement. The statement did not explain
      why standard procedures were not followed and USDA officials were not
      immediately available for comment."

      [Edited from:

      byproducts of a Texas cow that was destroyed after it showed potential
      signs of a central nervous disorder must be made into pig feed or be
      destroyed, the Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday. The FDA said it
      tracked down all the material from the cow that was sent to a processor for
      rendering into animal feed and other products. All the material is being
      held by a business that the agency did not name. The government has said
      that none of it got into the human food supply.

      The FDA planned to send a letter to the business saying it "will not object
      to use of this material in swine feed only" because pigs are not considered
      susceptible to mad cow disease, one in a family of illnesses known to
      infect grass-eating animals. If the business agrees to only using the
      material in swine feed, FDA said it will then track the material through
      the supply chain from the processor to the farm to ensure that the feed is
      monitored and fed only to pigs."

      [Edited from:

      [See also: "The Case of Mad Pigs in the U.S." at:

      TEXAS MAD COW BREACH NOT UNIQUE: (05/05/04): "The recent case of a Texas
      cow that displayed symptoms consistent with mad cow disease but slipped
      through the cracks of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's surveillance
      plan is not an isolated incident, an agency veterinarian and a consumer
      advocate told United Press International. The revelation that the cow was
      not tested has generated alarm among the public and Congress, and a USDA
      veterinarian said cows displaying central nervous system disorders, such as
      the one in Texas, often are not tested for mad cow -- even though the
      department considers these animals the most likely to be infected with the

      "Sometimes Veterinary Services (the USDA branch responsible for picking up
      brains for mad cow testing) won't even show up," the veterinarian, who
      requested anonymity, told UPI. "If you tell them the cow is under 30 months
      (old), they won't bother with it." The USDA recently announced an expanded
      mad cow surveillance plan aimed at testing an unspecified number of cows
      over 30 months old. The agency's position is cows under 30 months are
      unlikely to test positive, even if infected, because the disease can take
      several years to incubate. Yet, more than 20 cows under this age have
      tested positive worldwide, including one as young as 20 months in the
      United Kingdom.

      Felicia Nestor, senior policy adviser to the Government Accountability
      Project in Washington, a group that works with federal whistleblowers, told
      UPI she is looking into claims from USDA inspectors there may be other
      suspicious animals that have gone unreported. "From the evidence we have
      so far, we know (the Texas case) is not an isolated incident," Nestor said."

      [Very edited from long and disturbing article at:

      trio of Agriculture Department staff - two veterinarians and one technician
      - who were supposed to follow agency protocol by testing what they
      determined was an older cow that likely had a central nervous system
      disorder when it arrived April 27 at the Lone Star Beef plant in San
      Angelo, Texas. One government source and another within the industry, both
      of whom say they have firsthand knowledge of events that day, said the
      final call on not to test the animal was made by an APHIS supervisor in
      Austin, Texas, after an APHIS technician at the plant advised her
      supervisor she was preparing to take a tissue sample from the culled animal
      for BSE testing. Both sources spoke to Meatingplace.com on condition of
      anonymity, and USDA officials did not return telephone calls Tuesday
      seeking comment and confirmation of the allegations.

      What USDA has confirmed is that the agency's standard operating procedures
      call for animals condemned due to a possible CNS disorder be kept until
      APHIS officials can collect samples for testing. That clearly was done in
      this case. The animal sat for more than 90 minutes and less than two hours
      after it was condemned, stunned and killed before the APHIS tech told Lone
      Star Beef management to dispose of the animal "in a routine manner." As a
      condemned cow, there was never any chance that the meat from the animal
      would enter the food chain. What is less clear is what went wrong at USDA
      and why."

      [Edited from:

      Department of Agriculture hopes to find out by the end of this week why the
      government failed to conduct a mad cow test on a condemned animal in Texas,
      a senior official told Reuters on Wednesday. On Monday, the USDA said it
      had not followed standard procedures when it did not test a condemned cow
      at the Lone Star Beef plant in San Angelo, Texas.

      Ron Hicks, a senior official at the USDA agency conducting the
      investigation, said regarding a report that an Animal and Plant Health
      Inspection Service supervisor may have decided to not perform the test:
      "That's one of the points we're trying to do a follow up on and find out."
      Barbara Masters, acting administrator of USDA's Food Safety and Inspection
      Service, said, "We are working as quickly as we can to interview
      individuals. We hope to finalize that remaining work in the next couple of
      days." Masters and two other USDA officials, in a telephone interview with
      Reuters, did not respond directly when asked whether the agency has
      broadened its probe to include the farm where the condemned cow came from."

      [Edited from:

      USDA ORDERS SILENCE ON MAD COW IN TEXAS: (05/11/04): "The U.S. Department
      of Agriculture has ordered its inspectors in Texas not to talk about mad
      cow disease with outside parties. United Press International has learned
      that the gag order was sent May 6 by e-mail from the USDA's Dallas district
      office. It was issued in the wake of the April 27 case at Lone Star Beef in
      San Angelo, in which a cow displaying signs of a brain disorder was not
      tested for mad cow disease despite a federal policy to screen all such
      animals for the deadly disease, otherwise known as bovine spongiform

      The order reads: "All BSE inquiries MUST be directed to Congressional
      Public Affairs Phone #202-720-9113 attention Rob Larew OR Steve Khon. This
      is an urgent message." Representatives from the National Joint Council of
      Food Inspection Locals -- the national inspectors union -- alleged the
      order suggests the agency is concerned about its personnel leaking damaging
      information about the Texas case."

      [Edited from:

      the federal government prepares to expand testing for mad cow disease, U.S.
      Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman said Friday she won't be surprised if it
      turns up additional infected animals. Still, Veneman and other Agriculture
      Department and industry officials insisted the nation's meat supply is
      safe, despite critics who say the government isn't doing enough to protect

      "There is certainly a likelihood we will find more (diseased) cows,"
      Veneman said Friday during a conference on food safety sponsored by the
      Consumers Federation of America. "We are committed to an effective BSE
      program and we use science to guide us," Veneman said. "These are not food
      safety tests," she said. "They are animal surveillance tests for animal

      But the chief executive officer of a major Kansas cattle operation said
      Veneman and the administration were under pressure from the industry and
      have used science as a "cover" to hold down costs. Stewart [Creekstone
      Farms Premium Beef ] said the real issue was that a handful of packers who
      control 80 percent of the nation's meat supply fear that a broader testing
      program would cut into their profit margins. But Stewart said the tests
      would cost only $20 per animal and add only 4 cents to the price of a pound
      of hamburger."

      [Edited from:

      *04: Low Carb Risk, Your Brain On BBQ, Global Heart Disease
      HEART DISEASE NOW MAJOR GLOBAL THREAT: (04/23/04): "Cheap food, cigarettes
      and city life are causing millions of early deaths in the developing world,
      according to a report to be released on MondayHeart disease, once an
      illness of the rich, is killing more and more people in poor countries,
      according to the report. "The risk of cardiovascular disease is growing as
      populations increase in cities," reads the report, issued by Columbia
      University's Earth Institute in New York.

      "There, food is steadily becoming cheaper and exercise is scarce. The
      prevalence of obesity and of diabetes and of its precursor conditions, are
      rising faster in urban than in rural areas," the report adds. " The tobacco
      scourge, now at epidemic levels in less-developed countries, exacts its
      toll in many ways, but cardiovascular deaths are its principal mode of
      mortality." The result is that people are dying young -- in their most
      productive economic years. The loss of middle-aged workers will affect
      entire economies, the report cautions."

      [Very edited from:

      [The Columbia University Study:

      WALNUTS MAY PROTECT THE HEART: (05/06/04): "Eating certain plant-based
      foods, such as walnuts, opens the arteries and may help lower cholesterol,
      a small study finds. People in the study had a 33 percent improvement in
      vascular function -- blood flow -- after eating a plant-based diet rich in
      alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), compared to eating a typical American diet.
      Walnuts and walnut oil were the prime source of ALA in the study.

      "It looks like a good study," said Dr. David Jenkins, a professor in the
      department of nutritional sciences at the University of Toronto. He cited
      several studies suggesting the type of omega-3 fatty acid found in plants
      like walnuts may be as beneficial to the heart as eating fatty, cold-water
      fish, such as mackerel, salmon and herring."

      [Very edited from:

      low carbers at risk for immune system disorders by eating only foods
      labeled low carb. He labels this affliction LCTS. A 2003 Gallup poll
      disclosed that 47 percent of the U.S. population is now monitoring
      carbohydrate intake. It is estimated that the "low-carb" diet is followed
      by over 50 percent of weight-conscious Americans. The sales of low-carb
      products and services have been estimated at $15 billion in 2003.

      As Dr. Howard Peiper mentions in the book, Low Carb and Beyond, that
      lifestyle may not keep you healthy. You may become a victim of the Low Carb
      Tunnel Syndrome (LCTS) where you fail to look a your body's needs. Instead
      you may become focused on eating anything that claims to be low carb
      without consideration to ingredients. In Low Carb and Beyond, we are told
      that the body needs to absorb nutrients or we will eventually die. Carb
      blockers found in many low-carb foods prevent absorption and may prevent
      the body from gleaning nutrients from those foods. Dr. Peiper says, "Eating
      is supposed to be a ritual that is necessary to sustain life. If what you
      eat doesn't get absorbed, how can you stay alive?" "

      [Very edited from:

      THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON BARBECUE: (04/24/04): "Researchers reported this
      week that barbecue may, in fact, be addictive. The study, conducted at the
      Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, N.Y., and published in the medical
      journal NeuroImage, found that people crave certain foods as much as
      addicts crave drugs. Researchers basically starved a group of 12 people for
      a whole day, then asked them to describe their favorite foods. Test
      subjects identified chocolate, bacon cheeseburgers, pizza, cinnamon rolls,
      brownies, lasagna and, you guessed it, barbecue ribs, as their faves.

      "These results could explain the deleterious effects of constant exposure
      to food stimuli, such as advertising, candy machines, food channels and
      food displays in stores," he [Wang] says. "The high sensitivity of this
      brain region to food stimuli, coupled with the huge number and variety of
      these stimuli in the environment, likely contributes to the epidemic of
      obesity in this country." "You get that smell of barbecue in your brain
      and you go crazy!" he says. "You go and grab it and don't think about it.
      It's subconscious. You don't even know that you're behaving like a cocaine

      [Very edited from the sometimes funny article at:

      [Study astract:

      *05: Moby Expands, Veg'n Iron Chef, Veg Eye, Meatless Celebs
      MOBY ANNOUNCES BEVERAGE LINE, COOKBOOK: (05/03/04): "Two years after
      [vegan] Moby opened Teany, his vegan-friendly tearoom/café in New York, the
      musician has announced plans to supersize the enterprise with a cookbook
      and a beverage line. Calling it a "natural outgrowth of [the] venture,"
      Moby has proposed a book that would be "part cookbook, part autobiography,
      part fun-fact history." That history, however, would be fictional, as if
      Teany had been on the Lower East Side for generations, according to David
      Vigliano, Moby's book agent.

      The café actually opened in May 2002 and quickly became a hotspot for
      celebs seeking a cuppa, attracting Gywneth Paltrow, Alicia Silverstone,
      Susan Sarandon, Andy Dick, Jason Schwartzman and others. Despite its
      fabulous clientele, Teany is a quiet spot, a small storefront with a
      pocket-size terrace where tea aficionados gather to relax and read. While
      the selection of 100 teas is the menu's main attraction, it also includes
      sandwiches and unusual soups, such as squash-and-pear and

      [Edited from:

      [Teany's Website:

      [Moby's Website:

      [Moby's Essay: "Why Vegan?" cited in MC Newsletter #12:

      IRON CHEF COOKS UP VEGETARIAN CUISINE: (04/29/04): "... the second
      Vegetarian Iron Chef competition [was] held Tuesday night in the Bevier
      Hall cafeteria. The event, based on a popular television program, featured
      two teams of eight student and community chefs. The teams, representing
      Campus Vegetarian Society (CVS) and the Common Ground Food Co-op, competed
      to create dishes revolving around a secret ingredient. "The show itself
      has a cult following," said graduate student and event organizer Matt
      Cheney. "When we proposed the idea, people really wanted to participate."

      Vegetarian Iron Chef was sponsored by Campus Vegetarian Society (CVS) and
      was co-sponsored by Students Improving the Lives of Animals and the Student
      Dietetic Association. Featuring strictly vegetarian ingredients, the event
      drew an audience interested in learning about new dishes prepared with no
      meat products."

      [Very edited from:

      [NOTE: Howard Lyman teams with Dr. Michael Greger for a "Vegan Iron Chef"
      competition in July at Summerfest 2004:

      VEG EYE FOR THE FAT GUY: (05/00/04): "Fearing that some of today's biggest
      celebrities are in danger of cutting their careers short with their
      unhealthy lifestyles, PETA wants to help them slim down before they become
      too much of a good thing. Bravo has its "Fab Five," but PETA wants to offer
      its advice to the "Flab Five" with "Veg Eye for the Fat Guy" - an effort to
      give these five larger-than-life stars a meat-free makeover that will help
      them look and feel like new men. These lucky stars will be receiving PETA's
      "Veg Eye" makeover kit, including copies of PETA's vegetarian starter kit,
      which is chock-full of easy tips on how to switch from meaty to meatless;
      The PETA Celebrity Cookbook, which makes vegetarian cooking super simple;
      and samples of delicious, low-fat vegetarian food, including "fib ribs,"
      "fakin' bacon," and Tofurky.

      "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cured ham," says PETA's Veg Eye
      guy, Bruce Friedrich. "It takes a big man to admit that he needs to be a
      thinner man, and going vegetarian is one of the easiest, most healthful
      ways to stay slim." Enroll a Flabby Friend in the Veg Eye Invitational:
      Do you have a chubby chum in need of a refrigerator redux? Click here and
      we'll rush your big-boned buddy a free Veg Pledge pack chock full of
      recipes and coupons."

      [Edited from:

      particular heroes growing up were celebrities who used their noteriety to
      advance the cause of animals and a vegetarian lifestyle. In my teenage
      years, these included such women as Brigitte Bardot, Joanna Lumley (the New
      Avengers, Absolutely Fabulous), Chrissie Hynde (the Pretenders) and the
      late and much-lamented Linda McCartney. Of course there have been a lot of
      famous vegetarians throughout history, including Einstein, Charles Darwin,
      Mahatma Gandhi, Buddha, Thomas Edison, Leonardo da Vinci, Socrates and many
      more. A lot of stars today are continuing in that tradition. Here's a list
      of some well-known vegetarian celebrities:"

      [You can see the lists [Brad Pitt! Orlando Bloom!] at:

      *06: Cartoons!
      ["Beef Chart:"

      ["Cows with Tanks:"

      ["U.S. Dept. of Agriculture:"

      ["Early AR Activists:"

      ["Farm Fresh:"

      ["Now They Can Call it a Sport:"

      ["The Powerful Vegetarian Lobby:"

      ["Food Liberals:"

      ["A Healthy Industry:"

      *07: China Goes GMO, Monsanto Quits, Eco Air Force, Lead-free Law
      WHY CHINA GIVES GREEN LIGHT TO US GMOs: (05/03/04): "China has issued
      final safety certificates for the importation of five varieties of American
      genetically modified (GM) products last February, which has aroused some
      organizations' concern over why China gives a green light to the US GM
      organisms (GMOs). According to China's Ministry of Agriculture (MOA), all
      the five varieties, one soybean, two corn and two cotton, are from
      Monsanto, an American GM seed giant.

      The American Soybean Association President Ron Heck on Feb. 23 said that
      China's decision "will help ensure a steady market for US soybeans, while
      helping stabilize meat, fish, egg, and cooking oil prices for Chinese
      consumers." This, however, may not be the case, says Sze Pang Cheung,
      campaign manager of environmental group Greenpeace China, who had tried to
      persuade the Chinese government to restrict the use of GMOs in the world's
      largest market for soybeans. Some domestic media perceive there must be
      "pressures from the US government on the Chinese" to balance China's trade
      surplus with the US in 2003.""

      [Very edited from:

      [See also: "Chinese Public Wants Labelling Of GM Food:"

      activists on Tuesday claimed their biggest victory over biotech foods after
      US giant Monsanto announced it would shelve plans to sell the world's first
      genetically-modified wheat. "This is a worldwide victory for consumers and
      farmers," said Friends of the Earth International in a press release.
      "Virtually every major wheat-user in the world had already rejected this
      product before it even was allowed on the market. This must be one of the
      most rejected products ever developed."

      Sue Mayer, a campaigner with British group Genewatch UK, said Monsanto's
      announcement had come as a surprise. The pullback was "hugely
      significant", she told AFP. "Wheat is a very, very important market for
      them, offering vast potential for profits, so it can't have been an easy
      decision for them." Monsanto discreetly announced on Monday it was
      "realigning research and development investments" and would defer all
      further efforts to introduce its Roundup Ready wheat. Monsanto had spent
      six years on the product and lavished a sum reported to be in the hundreds
      of millions of dollars. Monsanto has already backed away from marketing GM
      potatoes after running into flak from fast-food companies."

      [Edited from:

      [See also: "Environmentalists Rejoice At Monsanto GM Decision:"

      AIR FORCE BASE BUYS ALL RENEWABLE ENERGY: (05/04/04): "Fairchild Air Force
      Base is making the largest single purchase of "green" power in the
      Northwest, buying enough energy from renewable sources to meet all of its
      electrical load. Most of the base's annual power requirements will come
      from electricity generated by wind turbines -- at least in theory,
      Bonneville Power Administration spokeswoman Debra Malin said Monday.

      The air base, home of KC-135 tankers that refuel military planes in flight,
      requires about 7.5 average megawatts of power, the amount used by a
      community of about 5,000 homes. The announcement is significant because it
      signals that even government agencies are willing to pay more for energy to
      avoid consuming power made from fossil fuels, Malin said. The military is
      usually viewed as being very conservative, so when it steps out and does
      something `green', that tells regional leaders it's not so far out," she
      said. "It sends a huge market signal.""

      [Very edited from:

      response to high lead levels in the drinking water systems of Washington,
      D.C. and Boston U.S. Sen. Jim Jeffords, I - Vt., today introduced
      legislation to overhaul and strengthen the federal rules governing lead
      testing and standards in the nation's public water systems. Jeffords said,
      "It is time to get the lead out of our pipes, out of our water, out of our
      families and out of our lives. Safe drinking water is not a privilege; it
      is a right - whether you live in Washington, D.C., or Washington State or
      Washington County, Vermont." The bill would place new responsibilities on
      the Environmental Protection Agency and public water systems nationwide to
      ensure that our nation's public health is not compromised by lead in our
      drinking water.

      The EPA estimates that about 20% of lead exposure comes from lead in
      drinking water. Lead exposure is particularly dangerous for children who
      retain about 68% of the lead that enters their bodies while adults retain
      about 1%. Children exposed to lead may experience low birth weight, growth
      retardation, mental retardation, learning disabilities, muscle cramps,
      stomach cramps, anemia, and kidney and brain damage. Lead can also be
      particularly harmful during pregnancy, affecting the unborn child or
      causing complications in pregnancy."

      [Very edited from:

      *08: Happy Elephant?, Fur Flies, Film Gala, Chimps Sign Online
      PROVE TO THE JUDGE THE ELEPHANT IS HAPPY: (04/30/04): "A judge gave a
      Tennessee zoo six months to convince him that an African elephant named
      Ruby is adapting well to her new home after being separated from a
      pachyderm friend in Los Angeles last year. Judge George Wu ordered the
      report from the Knoxville Zoo on Thursday during a hearing in a lawsuit
      that seeks to return Ruby to the Los Angeles Zoo.

      "As far as I'm concerned, it's the first time in America that we've had a
      Superior Court judge bend over backwards to see if an elephant is happy,"
      said Gretchen Wyler, vice president of the U.S. Humane Society's Hollywood
      office. Attorneys for the city of Knoxville say Ruby has not suffered since
      being separated from a companion named Gita nearly a year ago, when she was
      sent to Tennessee for a breeding program. The lawsuit claims Ruby is
      lonely, spends most of her time by herself on a concrete floor and does not

      [Edited from:

      THE FUR'S FLYING ON THREE WEB SITES: (04/26/04): "It's animal lovers vs.
      Neiman Marcus.... this year, at least in the online world, spring has
      raised a wintry matter, fur - and a flap over three other little letters:
      c, a, s. Those three letters have led Neiman Marcus Group Inc., one of the
      country's most conspicuous high-end retailers, to try to shut down three
      Web sites for the Fund for Animals, a national organization founded in 1967
      by former author and humanitarian Cleveland Amory.

      Why Neiman Marcus? Because Silver Spring-based Fund for Animals, seeking to
      use parody as a weapon in its fight against fur sales, dropped two letters
      - "m" and "u" - from the retailer's name, and replaced them with c, a and s
      to create a new name for its anti-fur Web sites: NeimanCarcass. As a
      result, the unhappy company has filed a complaint against the animal-rights
      group's Web-hosting company, Carol/Trevelyan Strategy Group, or CTSG, with
      the National Arbitration Forum, an agency that resolves disputes over
      Internet domain names."

      [Very edited from:

      FILM GALA UNITES RARE ART AND ACTIVISTS: (04/27/04): "The 2004 Artivist
      Awards will be held at the famous Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, California
      on Tuesday April 27th. The sparkling red carpet gala event crowns the
      six-day Artivist Film Festival, which officially started on Earth Day and
      represents a conscious coalition between filmmakers, artists and activists
      to raise funds and awareness toward constructive causes.

      Funds raised by the festival will go to Witness, Child Welfare League of
      America, The Humane Society of the United States and Greenpeace. Artivist
      will present awards to the festival's top films and to prominent actors,
      artists and activists for outstanding achievement in service of the key
      festival issues: children's advocacy, international human rights, animal
      rights and environmental preservation.""

      [Very edited from:

      [The Artivist Film Festival Official Site:

      CHIMPS USING AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE: (05/00/04): "[The Chimpanzee Human
      Communicatioin Institute] is a sanctuary for four adult chimpanzees who
      communicate with humans and each other using American Sign Language (ASL).
      The mission of CHCI is to protect and care for these Chimpanzees, educate
      the public on the endangered status of free-living chimpanzees, help
      improve the lives of all captive chimpanzees through ongoing research, and
      serve as a humane research facility for students. CHCI is home for these
      chimpanzees and is not open on a daily basis for entertainment purposes.
      CHCI believes that education is one of the most effective ways to save the
      chimpanzees and therefore offers one hour workshops (Chimposiums) to the
      public on weekends, as well as other, more formal educational programs."

      [CHCI website:

      [Check out the LIVE online Chimpanzee Cam!

      *09: Upcoming Events of Note
      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. The conference will be held on July 8-12 at the Sheraton
      Premiere Hotel in
      Vienna, VA, just outside the Washington Beltway."

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


      *10: Quick Bytes

      ["Hugs for Puppies:"

      [Farm Sanctuary's "No Veal" Campaign:

      [A great (not too graphic) Flash Animation at:

      [Animal rights leaders condemn U.S. chimp labs:

      [World's Great Apes Running Out of Time, Leakey Says


      ["NY Legislature Encourages Vegan School Lunch Options:"

      ["School programs discouraging carbonated drinks appear to be effective:"

      [USDA's Nutrient Database for Standard Reference:


      ["Plant-based Hunger Solutions Website:"

      ["Insecticides' Toll on Aquatic Life:"

      ["Toxic Pesticides Above "Safe" Levels in Many U.S. Residents"

      ["Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA)"

      ["EarthTalk: Are there any safe, nontoxic garden herbicides?"

      ["Volunteers Collect 4 Tons of Trash During Lake Cleanup"

      ["Celebrate Earth Day Everyday: Ten Simple Steps:"


      [More than cats: "You and Your Cat and Mad Cow Disease:"

      ["Woman dies from Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease:"

      ["Mad Cow Disease in New Jersey?"

      ["Tainted beef recalled in Illinois:"


      ["Staying a Vegan:"

      [PETA's Online Guide to Vegetarian Living

      [Over 10,000 veg'n recipes online:

      [Recipes from Dallas/Ft. Worth Vegetarians:

      [Book: "Animal Ingredients: A-Z"

      [Probably the largest collection of veg'n links anywhere:

      *11: Howard's Schedule
      May 15 - 16: Santa Rosa, CA > McDougall Wellness Center

      Jun 19: NY, NY > Animal Sanctuary
      Jun 26 - 27: Lodi, CA > 26th at 4 pm, 27th at 10:30 am - "Health and
      Healing Crusade"

      Jul 08 - 11: WashDC > AR2004
      Jul 21 - 25: Johnstown, PA > Summerfest 2004
      Jul 29 - 30: Wichita, Kansas > TBA

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

      Sep 11, 12, 13: Cleveland, Ohio > Journey Expo '04
      Sep 26: San Francisco, CA > SF Vegetarian Society
      Sep 27: Portland, Oregon > "AM Northwest TV," and KBOO radio (both tentative)
      Sep 28: Portland, Oregon > TBA

      Oct 12: Harrisburg, PA > 6:30 pm - Vegetarian Society and SDA Church

      [More details and contact info at:

      *12: 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!

      *13: Closing Thought(s)
      "Despite knowing the dangers of animal cannibalism since 1988, the U.S.
      Food and Drug Administration had waited almost a decade to begin banning
      such practices, and its regulations contained gaping loopholes clearly
      designed to protect the interests of industry, not consumers. The USDA,
      charged with the contradictory challenge of both regulating meat and
      simultaneously promoting increased sales, had turned a blind eye to the
      evidence of its own investigators that a TSE agent could be spreading in
      U.S. pigs, which under the new regulations can still be fed back to other
      pigs, cows, chickens and pets." (p. 217)

      "What the precautionary principle requires, is that when risks become known
      --- even hypothetical, unproven risks ---- action should be taken to avoid
      them. This is especially true in a high-tech society characterized by
      systems of global mass production, where even a single mistake carries
      potentially disastrous consequences." (p. 219)

      "If we let industry set the rules, however, there will literallly be no
      limit to what we'll swallow, and the nightmare of mad cow disease --- or
      something just as bad, or worse --- not only can happen here, but almost
      certainly will." (p. 220)

      - Sheldon Rampton & John Stauber in "Mad Cow USA," (1997)

      [download a copy of the above book in PDF at:

      [Stauber interviewed: "Don't Read This Over A Burger:"

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