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Engine 2 Interview, Mutant Milk, & SpiderVeg

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  • soulveggie
    Howdy! Welcome to the 67th issue of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter. In this issue we re proud to present a Mad Cowboy Interview with the amazing vegan
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 19, 2009
      Howdy! Welcome to the 67th issue of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter.

      In this issue we're proud to present a Mad Cowboy Interview with the amazing vegan firefighter/author, Rip Esselstyn, in the form of two of his favorite recipes. Rip's the son of Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn and has built upon his father's remarkable research via some very practical and easy-to-do ways in his diet/exercise/lifestyle book, "The Engine 2 Diet." There's also three of his recipes for you to try!

      Moving on further, there's articles about Mutant Milk, how saturated fat enables Altzheimer's, some surprising statistics on what we eat, Brainfood at the White House, a great new position paper by the ADA on the Vegetarian Diet, and more about that same diet reducing cancer risk.

      Continuing in this edition, there's the intriguing proposal for a 50 year Farm Bill, 70 pages of solutions to our agricultural woes, the real cost of food, the new composting mandate in San Francisco, how animal abusers are losing, AETA is winning, new math contrasting a vegan diet with a carnivore's, and the Amazing SpiderVeg!

      Also, here's a "sneak peak" at the 2009 VegNews Awards:

      ... as always, a tip of the hat to our new subscribers: y'all can browse past issues at the Mad Cowboy Newsletter Archives:

      Here's hoping everyone is warm, and to quote Rip: "plant strong" this Winter!

      Mark, MC editor/webmaster

      [personal vegan blog:


      00: Quote(s) from Howard
      01: A Mad Cowboy Interview with Rip Esselstyn
      02: Three Recipes from "The Engine 2 Diet"
      03: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      04: Mad Cow Info Round-Up
      05: Mutant Milk, Fat & Altzheimer's, US Fatter, What We're Eating
      06: Brainfood, Veg Diet Reduces Cancer & Chronic Disease Risks
      07: The Digital Vegan
      08: 50 yr Farm Bill, Ag Solutions, Real Food Cost, Composting SF
      09: Animal Abusers Lose, AETA Wins, Veg Math, Spider Veg!
      10: Howard's Schedule
      11: Quick Bytes
      12: Closing Thoughts

      *00: Quote(s) from Howard
      "When your health is a five alarm disaster the Engine 2 diet could turn you into a survivor. Fire fighter Rip Esselstyn is a real hero when it comes to learning how to eat a healthy diet. Read Engine 2 before it's too late to postpone a date with the undertaker."

      ---- Howard Lyman, and author of: "No More Bull!" and "The Mad Cowboy"

      *01: A Mad Cowboy Interview with Rip Esselstyn
      [Excerpts from the 2 part Mad Cowboy Interview with Rip Esselstyn, Vegan Firefighter, and author, "The Engine 2 Diet."

      R: "With my Dad [Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn], that message is perfect. Depending upon whom I'm speaking to, I'll hit the moderation. I was speaking to a group of firefighters the other day, and a guy asked me: "How much red meat can I have a week? Isn't everything in moderation fine?" I'm like, no... and you know what? The whole phrase "everything in moderation" is why we're in such dire straits right now in this country.

      One of the things about "Engine 2 Diet" is that what Howard is doing, my father's doing, and McDougall, Ornish and Fuhrman are doing, is we're trying to create a whole new paradigm in health and weight loss. To me, every other diet program out there concentrates solely on the outside of your body instead of what's inside your body. To me, we're creating beauty from the inside out."

      R: "... there's almost nothing as gratifying in life as helping somebody out. And I've been helping people out with this diet, literally since 1988, when after a year, I just knew that this was the truth and the right thing. I started sharing the message and people would come to me. I've been helping people, on and off... athletes to firefighters to friends and neighbors, family members, for a long time, so when the opportunity presented itself to write this book, and the fact that I could get out there and in one fell swoop, by writing a book, and help potentially thousands and thousands of Americans without having to wear my fireman's boots, it was just a dream come true."

      [Full interview:

      *02: Three Recipes from "The Engine 2 Diet"

      4 ounces tomato paste
      1 cup barbecue sauce (see E2-Approved Foods)
      2 teaspoons dried oregano
      2 Kabuli crusts [prepared pizza crusts]
      1 small red onion, sliced
      1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
      2 handfuls fresh spinach
      1 jar pineapple chunks, drained
      1/4 cup finely ground cashews

      1. Preheat oven to 425º.
      2. Mix the tomato paste, barbecue sauce, and oregano together in a bowl.
      3. Generously spread the sauce on the crusts, and layer with the vegetables and pineapple.
      4. Top with the cashews.
      5. Bake on a sprayed cooking sheet or pizza stone for 15 minutes.

      E2 SALSA

      1 can tomatoes
      1 large jalapeño pepper, diced (remove seeds to reduce heat)
      2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
      1 cup cilantro
      2 green onions, coarsely chopped
      Juice of 1 lime

      1. Blend the ingredients together to achieve the desired consistency.


      2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
      1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
      1 tablespoon vanilla extract
      2/3 cup milk substitute
      3 tablespoons agave nectar or maple syrup
      2 cups blueberries

      1. Preheat oven to 350º.
      2. Combine the flour and baking powder in a small bowl.
      3. Combine the vanilla, milk substitute, and nectar or syrup in a bowl.
      4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until smooth.
      5. The batter will be runny. Pour the batter into a nonstick 8-inch-square pan.
      6. Sprinkle the blueberries over the batter. Bake for 45 minutes or until browned.

      [Engine 2 Diet Website:

      *03: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      Each year, the United States suffers from diet-related health issues (heart disease, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure) that end up costing roughing how much?"

      (a) around $90 billion (b) more than $120 billion (c) near $200 billion (d) just under $300 billion

      The correct answer is (b).

      ["Obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high-blood pressure are all diet-related health issues that cost this country more than $120 billion each year. That's a lot of money.." 1st Lady Michelle Obama, from:

      Congratulations to BeBe Daeffler (aka "Moondancer") of Daytona Beach,FL She was the only person to guess the correct answer (a Contest First!) and as such, will receive both the VegNews subscription and the Ethical Planet shopping bag!

      "In a kitchen with normal air temperature, how fast will E. coli cells double in amount?"

      (a) every 45 min. (b) every 30 min. (c) every 15 min. (d) every 5 min. (e) Eww, that's gross...

      Please e-mail guesses to: webmaster@... with the word "contest" in your subject line by NLT November. 10th, 2009. PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR NAME AND ADDRESS (U.S. domestic only). It will not be sold nor given out to anyone but VegNews and Ethical Planet for the freebies only.

      [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]

      [Many thanks, also, to Fran Horvath, of Ethical Planet for offering a FREE organic cotton shopping bag to the 2nd place winner. You can learn more about her online (and offline) stores at:


      *04: Mad Cow Info Round-Up
      "380,000 LBS. OF BEEF RECALLED:" (06/28/09): " JBS Swift Beef Company, a Greeley, Colo., establishment is voluntarily expanding its June 24 recall to include approximately 380,000 pounds of assorted beef primal products that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.


      "COOKIE DOUGH AT NESTLÉ PLANT YIELDS POSITIVE TEST FOR E. COLI :" (06/30/09): ""The Food and Drug Administration said Monday that a sample of raw cookie dough collected at a Nestlé USA manufacturing plant last week had tested positive for E. coli. Nestlé voluntarily recalled all Toll House refrigerated cookie dough products made at the Danville, Va., factory earlier this month after the F.D.A. told Nestlé that it suspected consumers might have been exposed to E. coli bacteria after eating the dough raw. The agency and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been investigating whether the dough was the source of the E. coli outbreak that has sickened 69 people in 29 states, according to the latest C.D.C. data. E. coli is a potentially deadly germ that can cause bloody diarrhea, dehydration and, in the most severe cases, kidney failure."

      [Edited from:

      "MCDONALD'S HEPATITIS SCARE: INFECT EMPLOYEE EXPOSED THOUSANDS:" (07/20/09): "Authorities in northwestern Illinois are trying to figure out why a case of hepatitis A in a McDonald's food handler went unreported for more than three weeks. An estimated 10,000 people who ate at a McDonald's in Milan are being urged to get preventive treatment for the virus, which can cause fever and abdominal pain. At least 20 cases of hepatitis A have been confirmed in five Illinois counties, said Rock Island County Health Department spokeswoman Theresa Foes. An infected McDonald's employee came to work on seven days in July, possibly spreading the virus to patrons. Another McDonald's worker was diagnosed June 17, but health officials didn't know about that case until July 13, said Illinois Department of Public Health spokeswoman Melaney Arnold.
      In a written statement forwarded by McDonald's corporate office, franchisee Kevin Murphy said the restaurant learned of the case from health officials on July 13. Murphy operates the Milan restaurant... The hepatitis A virus can cause liver swelling but rarely causes lasting damage. Symptoms include fatigue, abdominal pain, vomiting and fever and can appear from 15 to 50 days after exposure..."

      [Edited from:

      "FEDERAL STUDY SHOWS MERCURY IN FISH WIDESPREAD, INESCAPABLE:" (08/20/09): "No fish can escape mercury pollution. That's the take-home message from a federal study of mercury contamination released Wednesday that tested fish from nearly 300 streams across the country. The toxic substance was found in every fish sampled, a finding that underscores how widespread mercury pollution has become. But while all fish had traces of contamination, only about a quarter had mercury levels exceeding what the Environmental Protection Agency says is safe for people eating average amounts of fish... Mercury consumed by eating fish can damage the nervous system and cause learning disabilities in developing fetuses and young children. The main source of mercury to most of the streams tested, according to the researchers, is emissions from coal-fired power plants. The mercury released from smokestacks here and abroad rains down into waterways, where natural processes convert it into methylmercury – a form that allows the toxin to wind its way up the food chain into fish..."

      U.S. Geological Survey: http://water.usgs.gov/nawqa/mercury/

      [Edited from:

      "TROUBLING SOURCE OF RESISTANT PATHOGENS: THE AMERICAN FARM:" (06/2009): "...several researchers at Johns Hopkins and around the world [are] assembling evidence that the industrial farming of chickens, pigs, and cattle is cultivating more than poultry and livestock — it's cultivating bacteria that medicine is losing the ability to fight. Antimicrobial drugs, including antibiotics like penicillin, ciprofloxacin, and methicillin, kill pathogenic bacteria. But they simultaneously drive the resistance that is bacteria's defense, especially when administered in low, subtherapeutic doses. Scientists estimate that 50 percent to 80 percent of all antimicrobials in the United States are not used by doctors to treat sick people or animals but are added to farm animal feed, mostly in such subtherapeutic dosages... If they are right, industrial agriculture is fostering and dispersing drug-resistant bacteria that impair medicine's ability to protect the public from them.
      The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates that livestock and poultry produce 335 million tons of manure per year, which is one way resistant pathogens get out of animals and into the environment. That's 40 times as much fecal waste as humans produce annually. Farms use it for fertilizer and collect it in sheds and manure lagoons, but those containment measures do not prevent infectious microbes from getting into the air, soil, and water. They can be transported off the farms by the animals themselves, houseflies, farm trucks, and farm workers, and by spreading manure on other fields. Out in the environment, they form a sort of bank of genetic material that enables the spread of resistance..."

      [Very edited from the long, comprehensive, and depressing article at:

      "CORONERS RELUCTANT TO TEST FOR VCJD, UK NEWS:" (08/19/09): "According to BBC News, coroners in England and Wales are reluctant to carry out tests for vCJD because it is outside their scope of their job and might undermine their neutrality, despite pleas from scientists and the government that this might be the only effective way to determine how many people might be infected. Professor John Collinge, a member of the government appointed Spongiform Encepalopathy Advisory Committee (SEAC), told the BBC that he hoped the coroners would be able to do the tests because he couldn't see "any other way for us to get this information at the moment". vCJD is short for variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, a brain-wasting disease that humans get from eating beef from cattle infected with Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE). There is also an unknown risk of cross infection from blood transfusions and surgery. The prion proteins that cause the disease are found mainly in the brain and spinal cord, although lower levels may be found in the spleen, tonsils and other lymph tissue.

      ... But, while the numbers of deaths from vCJD may suggest the prevalence is low and thus the risk of person to person transmission is also low (eg via blood transfusions, surgical operations and dental procedures), we can't rely on this evidence alone to tell us how many people could be carrying the disease without realizing it... A study published in the Journal of Pathology in 2004 that surveyed appendix tissue samples suggested that there could be considerably more people infected with vCJD than predictions that rely on clinical cases alone would imply..."

      [Edited from:

      "GAO: FEDS FAILED TO TELL SCHOOLS OF SUSPECT FOOD:" (10/09/09): "Federal authorities failed to tell schools about recalls of potentially tainted peanut products and canned vegetables, and cafeterias may have unknowingly served them to children, the Government Accountability Office reported Sept. 22. A GAO investigation found the U.S. Department of Agriculture didn't always make sure states and schools were notified promptly about recalled food distributed through the federal school lunch and breakfast programs, which serve 30 million students. GAO reported Sept. 22 that it took as long as a week for states to figure out which products were recalled, and that schools may have served the suspect food to kids during that time.
      "This report underscores the need for comprehensive reform of our food safety structures,'' Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois said in a statement. "The 30 million students in the national school lunch program, their parents, and the country at large, deserve to know that the food they eat is safe and free of contaminants...''
      [Edited from:

      "E.COLI PATH SHOWS FLAWS IN BEEF INSPECTION:" (10/04/09): "Stephanie Smith, a children's dance instructor, thought she had a stomach virus. The aches and cramping were tolerable that first day, and she finished her classes. Then her diarrhea turned bloody. Her kidneys shut down. Seizures knocked her unconscious. The convulsions grew so relentless that doctors had to put her in a coma for nine weeks. When she emerged, she could no longer walk. The affliction had ravaged her nervous system and left her paralyzed. Ms. Smith, 22, was found to have a severe form of food-borne illness caused by E. coli, which Minnesota officials traced to the hamburger that her mother had grilled for their Sunday dinner in early fall 2007...

      Meat companies and grocers have been barred from selling ground beef tainted by the virulent strain of E. coli known as O157:H7 since 1994, after an outbreak at Jack in the Box restaurants left four children dead. Yet tens of thousands of people are still sickened annually by this pathogen, federal health officials estimate, with hamburger being the biggest culprit. Ground beef has been blamed for 16 outbreaks in the last three years alone, including the one that left Ms. Smith paralyzed from the waist down. This summer, contamination led to the recall of beef from nearly 3,000 grocers in 41 states...

      Ground beef is usually not simply a chunk of meat run through a grinder. Instead, records and interviews show, a single portion of hamburger meat is often an amalgam of various grades of meat from different parts of cows and even from different slaughterhouses. These cuts of meat are particularly vulnerable to E. coli contamination, food experts and officials say. Despite this, there is no federal requirement for grinders to test their ingredients for the pathogen..."

      [Very edited from the long and comprehensive article below. Howard also pointed out that this article was on the "top fold" of the NY Times, which gave it considerable prominence and exposure:

      "H1N1 JABS POSE HEALTH CHALLENGE:" (10/18/09): "The US government's $6.4bn swine flu vaccination programme is likely to put the American public health sector under unprecedented strain and expose serious shortcomings, experts say... with the US struggling to recover from an economic recession, staffing could be an issue. Local health departments eliminated 8,000 positions in the first half of this year, after 7,000 job cuts in 2008, according to the National Association of County and City Health Officials. Another 12,000 employees have been subjected to reduced hours or mandatory furloughs this year. The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials says three-quarters of states have cut public health funding this year, while 61% expect smaller budgets in 2010. Seven states have cut back specifically on immunisation. Layoffs have targeted people needed for the H1N1 programme - nurses, nurse's aides and switchboard operators and receptionists who would help field public queries..."

      [Edited from:



      *05: Mutant Milk, Fat & Altzheimer's, US Fatter, What We're Eating
      "US OBESITY PROGLEM "INTENSIFIES:"" (07/01/09): "Obesity rates in the US have surged over the last year, a report shows. The Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found adult obesity rates rose in 23 of the 50 states, but fell in none. In addition, the percentage of obese and overweight children is at or above 30% in 30 states. The report warns widespread obesity is fuelling rates of chronic disease, and is responsible for a large, and growing chunk of domestic healthcare costs. Obesity is linked to a range of health problems, including heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes... For the fifth year in a row, Mississippi had the highest rate of adult obesity at 32.5%. Three other states - West Virginia, Alabama and Tennessee - also had adult obesity rates in excess of 30%. In just one state - Colorado - was the adult obesity rate below 20%...

      [Edited from:

      "STUDY EXPLAINS LINK BETWEEN FAT INTAKE AND ALZHEIMER'S:" (09/04/09): "In one of the first studies of its kind, Curtin Alzheimer's expert Professor John Mamo has explained why foods high in saturated fat can increase the likelihood of a person developing Alzheimer's disease. "Before now, there has been no dietary driven approach to the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease," said Professor Mamo, National Director of the Australian Technology Network's Centre for Metabolic Fitness at Curtin. "Our study found that some dietary fats damaged the `blood-brain-barrier.' The blood-brain-barrier is an important membrane that regulates what is normally allowed in and out of the brain, like important nutrients..." Professor Mamo's Curtin research team found that saturated fats, like those found in poor quality processed meats, caused an increase in amyloid delivery from the blood to the brain, resulting in a "brain overload" of amyloid..."

      [Edited from:

      [Plant and non-plant sources of saturated fat:

      "MILK MAY ENDANGER YOUR HEALTH, AND THE DAIRY INDUSTRY KNOWS IT: "A mutant protein has invaded the world's dairy supply, including, most likely, the milk in your fridge. The protein, called A1 beta-casein, is well known in the scientific community. While most dairy companies, trade groups and government agencies consider it harmless, a growing body of research implicates A1 beta-casein in diabetes, heart disease, autism and schizophrenia...

      Today, the average vessel of milk contains milk from many cows, with a mixture of both A1 and A2 beta-casein. Keith Woodford, a professor of farm management and agribusiness at Lincoln University in Christchurch, New Zealand, is spreading the word about what he believes to be the dangers of milk containing A1 beta-casein. His book, Devil in the Milk, builds on more than 100 peer-reviewed studies to present a compelling case that A1 milk poses substantial health risks. The book is a technical read, and conspiracy theorists will find it gripping, as Woodford details the extent to which corporations and government bodies with entrenched interests in maintaining A1 milk's reputation have disputed, ignored and silenced evidence suggesting there might be a problem..."

      [Very edited from a fascinating read at:

      "WHAT WE'RE EATING:" (10/16/09): "These are the top 10 items sod at grocery stores for the 52 weeks ending June 14, 2009. They are ranked by dollar sales.
      1. Carbonated beverages
      2. Milk
      3. Fresh bread and rolls
      4. Beer/Ale/Hard cider
      5. Salty snacks
      6. Natural cheese
      7. Frozen dinners/entrees
      8. Cold cereal
      9. Wine
      10. Cigarettes

      [Edited from below. There's also a link to the chart with $ figures:

      *06: Brainfood, Veg Diet Reduces Cancer & Chronic Disease Risks
      "VEGETARIAN DIETS CAN HELP PREVENT CHRONIC DISEASES: ADA:" (07/03/09):ADA's position, published in the July issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, represents the Association's official stance on vegetarian diets: "It is the position of the American Dietetic Association that appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. Well-planned vegetarian diets are appropriate for individuals during all stages of the life-cycle including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood and adolescence and for athletes."

      ... The revised position paper incorporates new topics and additional information on key nutrients for vegetarians, vegetarian diets in the life cycle and the use of vegetarian diets in prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. "Vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle," according to ADA's position. "There are many reasons for the rising interest in vegetarian diets. The number of vegetarians in the United States is expected to increase over the next decade." ... A section in ADA's paper on vegetarian diets and cancer has been significantly expanded to provide details on cancer-protective factors in vegetarian diets. An expanded section on osteoporosis includes roles of fruits, vegetables, soy products, protein, calcium, vitamins D and K and potassium in bone health..."

      [Edited from:

      [ADA's Position Paper:

      "VEGETARIAN DIET "CUT RISK CANCER BY 45 PER CENT:" (07/01/09): "Eating a vegetarian diet can almost halve the risk of developing cancer, research suggests. A study of more than 61,000 individuals aged between 20 and 89 found those who did not eat meat reduced overall incidence of the disease by 12 per cent. But the most striking difference was in cancers of the blood, including leukaemia and non-Hodgkin lymphoma with 45 per cent fewer cases among the vegetarians. 
      [Edited from:

      "BRAINFOOD AT THE WHITE HOUSE:" (07/01/09): "Brainfood is a program where high school aged youth can learn about food, nutrition, cooking, and jobs in the food industry through activities, games, restaurant visits, cooking in our kitchen, and working with guest chefs. Brainfood uses food as a tool to build life skills with youth in a fun and creative setting. Through culinary-related activities, we promote active learning, self-reliance and healthy living to empower youth as resources in their own community."

      [Lotsa photos at this link:

      [Washington Post article about the event:

      *07: The Digital Vegan
      VIDEO/AUDIO: Animal Rights Activist (AETA) & Interviewed on "DEMOCRACY NOW:"

      VIDEO: "Water Crisis:" Jon Stewart Inteview:

      AUDIO/VIDEO/TEXT: On the Media: "Covering Big Food:"

      RESOURCE: "What is Vegan?"

      VIDEO: "Earth Days"

      VIDEO: "What's Organic?"

      Audio: "Chemicals in Our Water:" On Point:

      VIDEO: "What's on Your Plate?

      *08: 50 yr Farm Bill, Ag Solutions, Real Food Cost, Composting SF
      "RECIPE FOR AMERICA:" (07/16/09): "Americans are more obese than ever, our current agriculture system is dependent on oil and other limited resources, our waterways and air are polluted by factory-like farming operations, and still opponents try to push sustainable agriculture to the margins. But change is possible, as Jill Richardson writes in her new book, "Recipe for America: Why Our Food System is Broken and What We Can Do to Fix It", which breaks down many of the issues facing the food system and provides approximately 70 pages of solutions..."

      [Very edited from:

      [Jill Richardson's Blog:

      "THE HIGH COST OF CHEAP FOOD:" (07/19/09): "For awhile, you can ignore poverty in schools, outbreaks of cookie dough E. coli, and the fact that 27 percent of our country's children are obese. But they're all connected — and these layers of bad news will eventually weigh one down. I found this statistic a little harder to overlook: For the first time in 200 years, today's children have a lower life expectancy than their parents. Unhealthy school lunches are certainly one reason. Here's another: Most of our food comes from huge factory farms that are government-subsidized to produce food products quickly but not nutritiously...

      ... According to Vandana Shiva, an Indian crop ecologist quoted in Barbara Kingsolver's book "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle," over the course of history, humans have consumed over 80,000 plant species. That number has now been reduced to eight species, with a continuous honing in on modified canola, corn and soy. When Kingsolver wrote the book in 2007, only six companies controlled 98 percent of the world's seed sales (Monsanto, Syngenta, DuPont, Mitsui, Aventis, and Dow), and they continue to desecrate land. Juggernauts like Monsanto send 330 small farm operators off their land a week. In a nutshell, government regulations will soon favor genetically modified (or GMO) seeds over organic seeds, and organic seeds might eventually become illegal..."

      [Very edited from:

      "3 WISE MEN, PLANTING IDEAS WHERE IT COUNTS:" (07/22/09): ""Eating is an agricultural act," essayist Wendell Berry famously wrote. It's also a political one. Which is why last week Berry, geneticist Wes Jackson and sustainable-agriculture advocate Fred Kirschenmann made a pilgrimage to Washington to make a case for a new kind of food policy... The three met with administration officials and senators to promote a 50-year-farm bill, a proposal for gradual, systemic change in American farming... Staff writer Jane Black talked with them about the future of agriculture, urban "food citizens" and whether genetically modified food can save the world. Excerpts follow:

      ..Berry: The inevitable aim of industrial agri-investors is the big universal solution. They want a big product that can be marketed everywhere. And the kind of agriculture we're talking about that leads to food security and land conservation is locally adapted agriculture. And they can't do that. Industrial agriculture plants cornfields in Arizona; locally adapted agriculture says, what can we fit in this place that will not destroy it? Or what can nature help us to do here? That's the critical issue. Washington doesn't think in 50-year increments. How do you sell this?..."

      [Edited from the full interview/article at:

      "NO FLIES ON S.F.'S NEW COMPOSTING LAW:" (09/09/09): "San Franciscans have six more weeks before they're required to toss their food scraps into green composting bins or face a fine - but apparently all the trash talk coming out of City Hall is already having an effect. Just a few months ago, the city Department of the Environment was doling out five to 10 green composting bins a day; now that number is up to 130. The amount of composted material coming out of San Francisco is up 15 percent over the past few months - now totaling 480 tons every day. "There's a real sense of urgency now," said Jared Blumenfeld, director of the Environment Department. "We never heard from these folks and, suddenly, they're saying, 'How do you do it?' "

      ... Starting Oct. 21, every home and business in the city must have three separate color-coded bins for waste: black for trash, blue for recycling - and now green for composting. Failure to sort trash initially will result in several warnings, but ultimately could lead to fines of up to $1,000 in egregious cases. The city's requirement - first of its kind in the nation - is part of a larger plan to have San Franciscans sending nothing to landfills or incinerators by 2020. City officials say the city currently diverts 72 percent of its waste..."

      [Edited from:

      *09: Animal Abusers Lose, AETA Wins, Veg Math, Spider Veg!
      "GIVING FARMED-ANIMAL ABUSERS THEIR DUE:" (07/16/09): "With so many high-profile stories in the news lately—the passing of Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett, the Gov. Sanford scandal, post-election protests in Iran—you may not have heard about the historic victories for animals that are taking place in American courtrooms. It's worth noting that two of PETA's undercover investigations of factory farms have just resulted in groundbreaking animal abuse convictions—convictions that are both highly significant and long overdue. All too often, the abuse of animals in the meat industry is shrugged off as just the cost of doing business... And here's a warning for workers in the meat industry: PETA's investigators (and the whistleblowers who tip us off) will continue to watch for animal abusers.

      [Edited from the sometimes graphic article at:

      "VIRTUAL SIT-INS DOOM ONLINE ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS:" (10/16/09): "Setting aside claims of vagueness, a divided federal appeals court is upholding the constitutionality of the Animal Enterprise Protection Act, a statute that makes it a crime to encourage "physical disruption" or "economic damage" against animal-research centers. Thursday's decision by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals (.pdf) was the first time an appellate court has grappled with the free speech issues raised by the law, reviewing the case of radical animal-rights activists who were convicted in 2006 of using e-mail and websites to encourage violence — including bombings — against a New Jersey animal-research center, its shareholders, office holders, bankers and others affiliated with it.

      The six ranking members of the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty group, some of whom were sentenced to up to six years in prison, argued that the 2002 statute, amended in 2006, has a chilling effect on speech because of its ambiguity... While the bulk of the defendants' online postings and e-mails were protected speech, the court said it was troubled with the dissemination of personal information of individuals employed by Huntingdon and affiliated companies — including some communications accompanied with threats to burn down their houses. What's more, the appellate panel said the defendants' e-mails and online postings that coordinated the denial of service attacks were clearly illegal..."

      [Very edited from the article at:

      "THE MATHEMATICS OF DIETARY DEATH:" (10/17/09): "Artist and graphic designer Mark Middleton recently calculated the true impact of food production on two categories of animals: domestic species specifically slaughtered for human consumption, and wild species killed as a consequence of agricultural harvesting. What's more, he translated his findings into an easy-to-read graph* that enables comparison of how different diets (i.e., plant vs. flesh foods) impact animals' lives — both by the numbers and as an interactive (filterable) visual representation of these otherwise abstract values...

      Extrapolating from this diagram, we find that:

      - Eating chicken flesh takes about 100 times the number of animals' lives as eating the equivalent caloric content of vegetables.

      - Subsisting on only grains for an entire year would likely cost fewer than two animals (e.g., field mice) their lives.

      - Contrary to Davis' central assertion, the number of wild animals who die as a result of beef production is much greater than occurs in the harvesting of all plant food varieties combined.

      [Edited from the very interesting article (with chart) at:

      "A VEGETARIAN AMONG 1000s OF MEAT-EATING SPIDERS:" (10/14/09): "For years, scientists were confident about one uniform trait of the world's 40,000 spider species: They were meat-eaters. So you can imagine the eureka moment when Brandeis senior lecturer Eric Olson realized a jumping spider he found in Costa Rica was a vegetarian..."

      [You can read about it here:

      *10: Howard's Schedule
      Oct 21st Boston, Mass. Northeastern University 7 PM C.RRosskam@...

      Nov. 3rd Ellensburg, Washington Central Washington University 2 PM Dean Hall 104  pearson@...

      Nov 8th Seattle, Washington Yakima Convention Center 3 PM hlyman@...

      Nov. 12th CWU 11AM TBA   

      *11: Quick Bytes

      [Useful resource and for networking:

      [SUPERB CSA (community supported agriculture) interactive resource:"


      ["Vegan Daily Blog:"

      ["Organic Consumers: Read, Blog & Meet-up!:"

      [The Mad Cowboy Newsletter Editor's Vegan Blog:

      [Podcasts, radio:

      [Robin Robertston's "Vegan Planet:"

      ["The FatFreeVegan Blog:"

      ["The Vegan Lunch Box Blog (PETA & Bloggy Award-winning:"

      [Bryanna Clark Grogan's Blog:

      ["Raw Vegan Blog and Podcasts:"

      ["Recommended Blogs & Websites for Food & Farming Information:"

      [100 Useful Websites for Vegetarians and Vegans:


      [The FatFree Vegan Yahoo Group List:

      [Farmed Animal Net:

      [VegNews Monthly Newsletter:

      [FARMUSA's MeatOut Monday Newsletter:

      [VegMichigan's PlantPeaceDaily Newsletter:

      [PCRM Membership News and Info:
      Send e-mail to: membership@...

      [Vegetarians In Paradise Newsletter:

      [International Vegetarian Union Newsletter:

      ["In a Vegetarian Kitchen: (Nava Atlas):"

      ["International Organization for Animal Protection:"



      [Over 10,000 veg'n recipe links:

      ["Over 1,000 International (regional) Vegetarian Recipes:"

      [PCRM Recipe Archives:

      [Almost 2,000 searchable fat-free veg'n recipes:

      [Award-winning searchable veg'n recipe database:

      [Constantly wonderful site of vegan recipes:

      [Some stunning recipes:

      [Fine collection of McDougall Recipes:

      [Heart-healthy Vegan Recipes:

      *12: Closing Thoughts
      M: "In your book, you also list a bunch of the myths of a plant strong diet. What would you say is the biggest one amongst these myths?"

      R: "I'd have to say the biggest one is protein. I get asked about that at least twice a day. I just say that if your consuming enough calories you never have to worry about getting enough protein."

      --- (Rip Esselstyn, Vegan Firefighter, author, "The Engine 2 Diet")

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