Friday, July 23, 2010

Episode 34 Chicken Friends

Episode 34 Chicken Friends

Hello and welcome to a fine episode of Coexisting With Nonhuman Animals.

I may have recently dissed Liberia, but one country I'll never mock is Latvia, I have a listener from Riga, Latvia who often visits my blog.  So uh, Hi!  I hope I pronounced your cities name correctly.

You can see on the right side of my website where visitors are from, I think its a great widget.  It shows you that people from all around the world are interested in Veganism.  You'll notice a lot from Invercargill New Zealand, its not like I'm desperately checking my own blog to see who else is visiting…its um….that I have lots of listeners here in my rural city of dairyfarmers,…..yeah.  

I've recently finished all the Arthur C Clarke Space Odyssey books, 2001, 2010, 2061 and 3001: The Final Odyssey.  The last book has mention of food. Franke Poole, the astronaut who is presumably killed by HAL 9000 in the first movie, who drifted through space, DEAD, was magically brought back to life a thousand years later.  Future society is weird, but somehow he quickly gets over missing any friends or family from his past, which I thought was not very nice.  The food of 3001 is mentioned,

Sadly, Frank thinks to himself about how he misses "real food", I certainly don't miss any non Vegan product.

Oh, and I had a sudden thought explosion, I've had difficulty telling people why I wont wear woolen clothing, there are many sheep in New Zealand, and wool is common.  "got your winter woolies on Margret? oh yes yes" is what elderly white people will say when winter strikes.  I remember my Aunty, having "sheep skins", the entire torso skin of a sheep, preserved and put on her mattresses, for warmth.  Its as if they cut the animals head and limbs off, and keep the rest as a rug.  I'm very glad times have changed.  I had a bolt of inspiration, at least in New Zealand, we use the term "fleeced", as in, "damn, I got fleeced by that jerk", fleeced meaning "something you had was stolen" according to an online definition.  Hmm, fleeced, when you cut the wool from a sheep, and we use it as "when someone stole from you".  This usage can join "don't try and pull the wool over my eyes" as negative points for wool.  We use so many awful figures of speech in regards to animals    .  A recent newspaper had a high end fashion retailer mentioning "its killing two birds with one stone".  Well, I may not live in the most civil of societies, we only JUST got the iPad today you know, but surely, even for Invercargill, our fashion retailers are not out there killing birds with rocks, surely?  So why would we be boastful of killing TWO animals with a single stone?  Does that make you more attractive as a person?  Hardly. 

Many of the welfare groups attack wool because of "crutching", when parts of the sheeps backside are cut off, for fear of flystrike.  I don't believe thats common, if performed at all in New Zealand, our temperatures are so much…I'm trying to avoid saying "we're colder"….we have a more NORMAL temperature, instead of those soaring deserts next door.  But wool is really no different from any animal product, in my area, there are sheep shearing contests, when a couple men in t shirts called "wife beaters" see how many animals they can shear.  The frightened sheep are picked up and thrown upside down against the floor, quickly shorn, and then shoved away, for the process to begin with the next sheep.  If a hairdresser for any other animal threw a non-sheep upside down against the floor, they would end up in jail.  Its plain wrong to treat so called "farm animals" any worse than say, cats or dogs.  Especially when Chickens are superior in every possible way.  Wool is a terrible product.

I found an interview with Paul McCartney that was interesting.


"He felt that one day a week was "do-able". "If you ask people to go completely vegetarian, it may be too challenging. This wasn't asking so much."

What would he say to those who argue that one day a week isn't enough? "I think any move in the right direction is enough. If you want my real point of view then, yeah, I would encourage people to go vegetarian, but that's not what this campaign is about. And it's not what the UN campaign was about."

McCartney says he has a lot of friends who eat meat, and likens it to religion. "I wouldn't want someone to be bossing me, saying, 'You should be a Buddhist.' I'd say, 'Lay off, I'll make my own mind up, thank you!'. I don't want to go laying it on people – 'You really should be vegetarian.' I like them to come to it themselves."


I came across his interview on a Welfare promoting Vegan messageboard.  Paul McCartney is not Vegan, he is Vegetarian, whatever that means.  I came across Veganism by myself, and it took an awful lot longer than if someone had been there promoting Veganism to me.  Paul, when you yourself decide to have your rights signed away, to be artificially inseminated, to be milked, to be kept in a cage for your eggs, and to be killed at a young age, NOT , THEN nonveganism is YOUR personal choice.  Its not difficult to be Vegan Paul, its not for a Day Tripper, its Eight Days A Week, try Veganism for yourself, you'll see its easy, I'm sure you'll soon be singing " I Feel Fine".

I'll also mention this quote from the interview, "There was one moment on holiday when the kids were quite young. And they said, 'Can we have a chicken dinner?' And we said, 'You can, but you know it's those things we have at home, the little chickens you love so much.' And they said, 'We still want to try it.' I said, 'Yeah, OK.' So they did, and they didn't like it."

I don't mean to be so pedantic, but I try and avoid ever mentioning anything to do with animals being "its" or "things".  "its those things we have at home, the little chickens you love so much".  I too love Chickens, as you know, I call them my Chicken Friends, they are Chickens, they are my friends, my Chicken Friends.  I try and avoid ever using words for them like "pet" or "companion animal", I'd also prefer not to see them as refugees.  I figure my little friends have as much right to live in my backyard as I do, I sometimes sleep outside you know,  they are not illegal immigrants hiding from Immigration, they belong here as much as I do, they are my friends.  I'd like to share a quick story, Mr Rooster sometimes gets aggressively territorial, he'll bite my shoes, and sometimes even jump and try to "kickbox" me, Roosters have very large spurs, like a large sharp fang on each foot.  My usual approach is to raise my shoe up, off the ground, to look larger than him, hopefully to remind him how much bigger I am, and also get my foot out of his way.  With chickens, they have a pecking order, and they raise their heads to aggressors, to match their stance, or they duck their head to give in, and take a couple quick pecks.  Raising their heads shows the attacker they are not afraid.  For whatever reason, he was still wanting to peck at my shoe, when one of the now fully grown Chicks, came over to stop him.  This nice little hen put her wings out, as if she was hugging two other chickens, each wing out, to look as big as possible, and she made an odd noise.  She was clearly "sticking up for me", very odd, given I'm nearly 2 metres tall remember, and probably the weight of at least fifty Chickens.  And yet, she definitely came over, looking as large as she could, and he stopped attacking me.  Now, perhaps some might argue she didn't like seeing another chicken getting in a frenzy, and only wanted him to stop jumping, pecking and kicking.  Well, theres no doubt in my mind she was trying to defend me, as best she could.  They might not like being held or patted, but I think its quite clear they like spending time with me.  All the chickens will follow me around the garden, and often when I sit down, the chicks especially will sit close by.  The Black Chick, as I still call her, will most often stick by my side.  She will flutter up onto a bench with me, and watch my expression, if I reach to pat her, she might put up with it, but most likely will slowly shuffle away.  She likes being with me, still not fond of being patted.  I think its clear to say Chickens may have small brains, but they care for each other, and they apparently now care for me too.

Despite the work of Paul McCartney and "its a personal choice", luckily New Zealand is maintaining her utter domination, per capita, of Vegan podcasts.  Emmy James was recently featured on the world renowned

A young Vegan out there spreading a true VEGAN message, meanwhile, our large welfare group is squabbling over the definition of "welfare".  Apparently, SAFE is angry with The Pork Board about their new label put on dead pigs, "welfare approved", when theres been no changes to how the animals are treated. 

There was going to be another Close Up story, until, reading from a SAFE PR release:



Felt like you missed pigs on the Close Up tonight? You didn’t. The story was cancelled at the last minute after the owner of the pig farm, Colin Kaye, refused to appear after he watched the footage of suffering pigs on his farm.

SAFE campaign director Hans Kriek, says “This is the same farm exposed by Mike King 15 months ago. The new footage reveals that conditions are even worse now, nothing has changed and the pigs continue to suffer.”

This weekend, SAFE will release the shocking footage that Colin Kaye was too ashamed to defend.

Click here for more information about SAFE's LovePigs campaign. Make a donation towards SAFE's campaign to help pigs."

Oh wait, breaking news, the story went ahead after all!

I corrected a spelling mistake on the initial page, Hans Kriek was called "Hand Kriek", which sounded kind of interesting, I'll keep "Hand" in mind if I ever name a child.

Sam McIvor from the Pork Board is quite right, what we purchase as consumers is up to us.  We can choose how we want to live our own lives, the Man In The Mirror.  And what choices are being offered?  Well, The Pork Board seems to now be suggesting there IS a difference between "free range" and this "indoor raised" meat.  Remember when they denied denied denied?  "oh, we keep the property, I mean Animals, in cages because it stops them from fighting and they live better lives and less illness and and and….".  And, McIvor seems to say its up to the consumers conscience if they want to pay a bit extra or not.  Then we have SAFE, "Save Animals From Exploitation", who consider being kept alive as property to be less than "Exploitation".   I don't know how I could feel that way, but thats their position.

We have a large nationwide group out there demanding more of those "welfare reforms", meanwhile, Emmy found it easy to speak plainly and honestly about respecting animals, and without thousands of donors.  Thank you for what you do Emmy, I, and the many other people who listen are so pleased to have your new podcast.

You can find Emmy's show at , I hope you'll subscribe in iTunes. Vegan For Life,

I'd also like to mention Veganism and Religion, or lack there of.  I know some religious or spiritual Vegans, and many Atheist Vegans.  While I'm a staunch Atheist, I do believe silly jabs at the Religious or Spiritual are, well, silly.  I was offended when I noticed another nonbeliever had typed out a list of ways to "convert" a Christian man to Veganism.  A lot was said about how he was OBVIOUSLY stupid for being so religious, and that he was a "christ corpse muncher".  Well, I'm glad I spoke out asking for some degree of respect, as long as someone elses personal beliefs or theories don't harm me or society, I'm fine with them.  Just as I think its foolish to make fun of non vegan people, I wouldn't call religious people stupid, especially when we are trying to show them how Veganism is about nonviolence and respecting others!

I do have a little anecdote about my own Atheism though.  I went to two Catholic schools, but I decided I was Atheist many years ago.  I had an idea how to test if there were a God, or not. I planted a 10 cent coin under a layer of bark chips beneath a tree outside my neighborhood church.  I'd found the coin earlier, and it seemed like a good idea.  Depending on your viewpoint, either God WANTED me to have the coin, and it flew down from heaven to wait for me, and me alone, or the other approach is someone lost 10 cents.  Take your pick.

It was all well and good building an entire universe in a few days, then couldn't the big guy affirm a little boys faith, by performing a trivial divine miracle, making that 10 cent coin mutate into an 11 cent coin?  If heaven were having a recession, I would have been equally satisfied with a 10.1 cent coin too.   Hell, as I planted the coin, I hoped that the Nuns at the convent next door might be listening in, I would have been pleased had a Nun swapped the 10 for a 20 cent coin!  I'd have kept going back, to show my friends, while loudly saying "so my fellow believers, if this  coin I'm leaving under this tree, this tree right here, refuses to increase in value, then we shall have seen how our God doesn't love us".

Perhaps some other little brat had the same idea, because the convent is no more, perhaps bankrupted through tests of faith slash scamming the elderly nuns.  Either that, or said elderly nuns "went to heaven", and were not replaced.

Heres a shocking fact, according a recent news clip, New Zealand is the world THIRD most obese country:

Some Welfare/Rights groups overseas have mentioned that Vegetarians and Vegans tend to be less likely to be overweight, that being Vegetarian is a great way to lose weight.  I do think its obvious that the types of food you eat often reflect your own bodyweight, but I'm sure its just as easy to eat fatty Vegan foods as fatty nonvegan foods.  The groups most upset about our Obesity epidemic, because being overweight is a disease that can be vaccinated, its also spread by mosquitos, right?


These groups have mainly focused on taxing quote "unhealthy" foods, OR, asking for taxes to be removed from designated "healthy" foods.

Veganism IS NOT A CURE for being overweight or obese, its silly to promote Veganism as a diet, but it does seem to have additional benefits to our health.  And theres always some wacko welfare group that'll spring into action, demanding the government have a meat free Monday, no tuna Tuesday or factory farm-less Friday, or that feeding children meat is quote "child abuse", because of course eating other animals makes you fat.  There are plenty of nonvegans who are thin or muscular, its silly to argue otherwise, just as if saying "all smart people are Vegetarian or Vegan", just because Einstein and Tesla were Vegetarian.

I also like forging cheques from Hawking, his signature is "stevieH" typed in 12 pointTimes New Roman.

I promote Veganism for ethical reasons, the health angle can change, a crazy new product might come out that fixes any "meat problem" healthwise

Speaking of a crazy product, I found this really weird website, , with the tagline "they feed my soul!".  No, its not a PR site for a communion wafer farmer, but a shill site for animal agriculture. 

I'll read the main part of text

"We may be young, but we are not stupid.
We love farmers. They feed our soul. Together we are working to help our generation understand the importance of knowing where our food comes from and who produced it.
We’re not your typical “who cares” kind of young people from the Millennial Generation. Sure, we all have cell phones and we text like crazy. We have iPods and spend way too much time on Facebook and MySpace, but we care about our planet. We care about our country. We care about the American family farmer.
Few of our friends know how their food is produced. We think that is sad. And, really it is kind of scary. If we are not careful, we will become dependent on other countries to provide our food. That is not good. Who knows what goes on in other countries when it comes to growing our food? We have an idea, and it too is not good."

Apparently the quote "young people" who are meant to be writing the site are in their 20's, "they" talk as if they are in their early teens, working on a homework assignment and chatting to their friends about which girls they like.  And "few of our friends know how their food is produced, we think that is sad.  and really, it is kind of scary", right, so where do we go to learn about our food kids?  Why, a website funded by animal agriculture, of course.  The general vibe seems to be "buy our stuff, because you cant trust those damned foreigners, some of them even drive on the other side of the road, or use the hated metric system".   Its interesting, the New Zealand meat industries have the same view of "the outside world", they all seem to be xenophobic, WE get told horror stories about those damn North Americans, especially this cataclysmic FLOOD of "cheap meat" coming from Canada.  I suppose "buy " is a simple marketing formula worldwide. 
and, this bit is crazy:

"If we do not make wise choices about where food in America comes from today, we will be become dependent on foreign sources of food tomorrow. That scares us. Look what happens when we depend on others for our oil. We fight wars and lose our friends."

It really says that!  Seriously,  its Unreal!  "wise choices about where X comes from"…."dependent on foreign sources of X" "scares us" and outright "look what happens when we depend on others for our oil, We fight wars and lose our friends".  You mean, THEIR oil, not your oil, its in their countries, not yours!

Ok, well, the New Zealand sites I've seen have never mentioned invading other countries to steal their precious food supplies, can you imagine calling your friends fallen heroes, when they've been blown apart by an IED, fighting overseas for a can of peaches?  California, make sure you further bankrupt yourself by stocking up on those magnificent F-22's, the glorious New Zealand Airforce is on her way, I think I can hear both Spitfires puttering off now, and they're not coming home without your Oranges, mate.

I quite enjoy reading pro animal agriculture sites, especially ones that try to astroturf public opinion, by appearing "hip and "with it", supposedly designed by a bunch of 20 year olds whose greatest worry is that they might eat food from another country.

This was an unusual story, to see fishermen getting so emotional over an aquatic animal, its weird.

Never mind all the other animals we happily killed, we have to save the single dolphin because ITS more "telligent". 

I also saw a video of a supposed quote "suicidal" Japanese Dolphin, who lept from his or her tank, balanced on the edge, and then fell outside during a performance. 

From the 3 News Story:

"Former US dolphin trainer Rick O’Barry said the dolphin was trying to kill itself, likening the mammal’s behaviour to that of a person who wants to jump out of a building.
The habitat is so unnatural it leapt out in desperation, he said.
“It wanted to end it.”"  Well, I guess that makes sense "Jordan wanted to end Jordan"

Its interestingly political, at a time when we are applying pressure on Japan for killing another marine animal, the Whale, that we'd get reports of how upset captive Japanese animals are, and Dolphins too.  Everyone loves Dolphins.  This would tie in with The Cove. 

I am not a Dolphin Trainer, but I think to say "the Dolphin, yes, IT was suicidal", is very odd.  Although, a Suicidal Dolphin does sound like a post modern song title:

Now, we can keep it pimpin', or we can get into some gangsta stuff

we spending most our time
fretting over a dolphin suicide,
we spending most our time
crying over a dolphin suicide,

tell me whyyyy are we, so blind to see,
56 billlionnnnn,
killed land animals

we spending most our time
fretting over a dolphin suicide,
we spending all this time
crying over a dolphin suicide.

That'll be available for 99cents on iTunes soon, don't worry.

"They say I gotta learn
But nobody's here to teach me.
If they can't understand it, how can they reach me?
I guess they can't,
I guess they won't,
I guess they front,
That's why I know my life is out of luck, foo!"

Hey Coolio, you've still got some luck left, my friends and I can provide some information about Veganism, unlike the non Vegans promoting Welfare reforms.  I've made a convenient link to a list of my podcasting friends, ., or as I normally say "bitly", is very handy for making custom , short links. is the full website address, .ly is the country code for, ah, libya, I had to be careful saying that, Remember, I get confused enough with Liberian and Librarian.  I have a couple custom links now, I mention they are on , theres /56billion for the direct link to the UN PDF of animals killed in 2007, the new /veganpodcastinfo , a link of Vegan podcasts , and also /chickensax, s a x.  I hope you've seen that video, currently 140+ people from around the world have seen my little friends playfully arguing over a couple cents worth of bread.  I like mentioning the Chickens in my backyard whenever I talk about Veganism, I think by showing videos of how Chickens play with each other, we can all see for ourselves they are individuals, and they matter.  Unlike a recent advert in my newspaper, Chickens are not worth $4.75 cents each, minimum order of 30, shipped by freight plane from the other end of the South Island.  I think nothing of throwing away over a thousand dollars on a new cellphone with crappy reception, but Chicken Friends are priceless.

Everytime a dolphin is hurt or killed, its a bloody outrage, we have to write letters to parliament, or our congressmen, but most people don't even see the 56 Billion land animals killed each year, all around us.  Please promote Veganism.  For more info, try my link to other Vegan podcasters, veganpodcast info . 

Like Paul McCartney,

Well, I don't get high with anyone, I guess the metaphor could be that my friends helped me grow into the 1.95 metre tall person I am today.

I've really enjoyed making this little show of mine, I've met so many nice people, thank you to anyone who has emailed me, I've really appreciated your comments, honestly, I have, I like meeting new people and I hope you will continue to promote Veganism.  I'm very sad you've had nothing better to do than listen to an uneducated 22 year old New Zealander talk on and on about his Chicken Friends, there are now many great Veganism promoting podcasts available.

I mentioned religion earlier, Jesus Christ is said to have lived until he were 33, I made it to 34 episodes.  Unlike The Beatles, I'm not comparing myself favorably to JC, I'm just trying to be lighthearted by wrapping up threads as I end my show.

And as always, Thank you for listening :)

Emmy James

Emmy Clip

"Pig Welfare Not Good Enough"

Dolphin Saved Video
Meat Starch video

NZ 3rd most obese

Funny "Pro Farming" (as in, meat, dairy, eggs…)

"Suicidal" Dolphin leaps from tank

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