Monday, November 24, 2008

The Bush legacy

A study in contrasts. A farmer in Colorado decided to open his unharvested field to the locals. He told a thousand people they could come and harvest the root crops for themselves for free. About 40,000 people showed up for free potatos and beets. [h/t sekmet]

Meanwhile, ABC News featured a photo array of 12 conservative women superstars wearing expensive dead rodents.

[More posts daily at The Newshoggers and The Detroit News.]

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw the footage of the root vegetable gleaners. I think Rachel Maddow said that she decided to view it as a good deed done right, rather than a scary tale of what's to come. If I squinch my eyes really tight, I can view it that way too.

And - remember, I told you I'm gullible - that "Pretty In Mink" slideshow: is that really really for real? Oh jeebus, how cringeworthy.

7:28:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I like that take on the gleaners even though it felt pretty scary to me. Guess I'll squinch my eyes too and see if that helps.

The Pretty in Mink was real as far as I know. I'm not sure what the point of it was though or whether it was some kind of paid placement for either the Luce Foundation or the fur company.

9:12:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Mink aren't rodents. The European Mink is a relative of the skunk actually. They are predators who eat cute, cuddly things like rabbits.

There are so many of them in the wild in some places that they're pests and there's a program to reduce their population. American mink in Europe, released into the wild by PETA types, have become an envirnmental problem.

Mink coats are almost always made from farmed animals -- as are Hamburgers, hot dogs and Thanksgiving turkeys.

Ann Coulter isn't actually a mammal but a cold-blooded reptile with a tough scaly hide suitable for making cowboy boots and wallets.

9:40:00 AM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

By the way, leaving the corners and margins of your field unharvested and allowing the poor to come and pick up the stuff on the ground is a Biblical commandment -- one of the 613, 603 of which, like the Abomination of Cheeseburgers, don't get written on Georgia courthouse walls.

9:49:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Interesting Fogg. I thought they were rodents. Anyway rodent was the imagery I wanted for the con-gals. Think of it as blogetic license. They certainly appear to be pests in any event.

I don't have any deep moral objections to mink coats. My mother had several fur coats and I loved them wearing them at one point in my life. I think I'd probably like it better if they made them out of wild minks instead of mink farming but I don't feel like I have any moral high ground on that. I eat factory raised chickens I'm sure when I hit the local Wendy's for fast food.

I just thought the contrast was especially jarring. You have people digging food out of the ground with their bare hands while the price of one of those costs could reduce hunger for some poor family.

As far as gleaning I remember that passage. In fact I've gleaned myself when I lived on the farm. There was a large potato farm operation in the next town, they supplied Lay's potato chips and after they harvested there were always a lot in the field that fell off the trucks and the locals were free to come and glean. I did it more out of desire not to waste food than necessity, but still it was good to save money.

10:41:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't wear mink because I don't have anything mink already, because I can't afford it, because I don't need fur-level warmth where I live, and anyway, it's creepy to me. But I know that it's our job as humans to help manage the land, either to protect wilderness, or balance interests in more inhabited (by people) areas.

There's a lot of open space parkland in my area. It looks wildernessy, but it requires careful management. Out in west Marin, they have an ongoing problem with non-native deer overpopulation, endangering native species and vegetation. So sometimes the herd's got to be culled. I get that. There's always a chorus of people saying that the deer were here first and maybe we should cull people, or at least capture and relocate the deer. And that's just unrealistic and irresponsible.

But I think what got me about the Pretty In Mink slideshow is that the "models" agreed to do it. I know one of the draws must be to piss off "liberals", who they surely assume are all PETA people. But another part of it is pure Barbie Dream Glamor Photo Shoot Syndrome. I remember years ago, Diane Sawyer (who used to be an actual journalist, sort of - remember her standing in front of Three Mile Island for days?) posing for a glamor photo shoot. It wasn't tawdry, especially, but it featured come-hither looks and coy poses, and I tried to imagine Dan Rather being asked to do something like that, and agreeing to it.

And here are some supposedly serious women, and damn, the glamor shots aren't even very good. They're kind of sad. I wonder why they thought it'd be such a good idea. (They'll tell me it's empowering, I suppose, and that I'm ugly and jealous.) I guess I know: just remember Ann Coulter at (I think) the 2004 election, attending and being quickly fired from commentating on the Democratic Convention. She referred to the Dem women as hirsute smelly dowdy Earthshoe wearing blah blah blah, and referred to herself as being unpopular because she was "one of the pretty girls". Pretty don't last, Ann. A hundred years from now, she and I are going to look exactly the same.

1:03:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

There's not much occasion to wear fur here in South Florida either. I even feel uncomfortable in long sleeve shirts.

We too have a big problem with invasive species and scary local species that terrify the New Yorkers who come here. There was an angry letter in the local paper last week demanding that the country exterminate the bobcats, for instance. Hell, I've had Puma walk across my patio and I love it, but the big problem isn't hunters or trappers, it's the loss of habitat and these animals are hungry.

But for what it's worth, the narcissistic puffery of those women is nauseating to me too. Ann, of course is in a class of ugliness all to herself and however nasty an animal a mink might be, it was never a match for that evil woman.

Bill Maher, who supposedly once dated her, jokes that he's not certain she's even female.

1:58:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Well said larkspur. I love that nym by the way. I don't really need fur level warmth here either although the last week or so was so cold that I wouldn't have minded one. I also kind of creepy though and switched over to fake fur many years ago. I had a gorgeous black Russian army coat that I bought for five bucks at a tag sale that looked so real I had to tell people it was a fake. Finally wore it to death. I was going to repair it but my last house was so damp it got moldy in storage so I had to toss it. I was very sad but then again, I really don't need anything that warm here anyway.

Fogg, you have bobcats? I'm totally jealous. They used to say we had them in the woods at the farm but I never saw one. In fact I only saw a bear once and the place was teeming with them. We did used to get a fox that would come into the yard regularly though and every year when they harvested the cow corn on the lower forty we would get a little family of pheasant that would parade down the driveway. Always looked forward to that.

3:14:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

My property abuts the Hobe Sound Federal Wildlife Sanctuary. My back yard is a thousand acres of jungle complete with all the things that live in such places. People have ideas of Florida that don't include its being a vast wilderness.

I've seen half a dozen bobcats and one bigger cat that I'm sure was a Florida panther, although they are quite rare. Fortunately the wetlands on my side of the tracks are salty and we don't have alligators!

We do have otters, Raccoons, Armadillos, and the occasional boar. More snakes than I can name and more kinds of bird: Ibis, Heron, Cranes,Osprey, black vulture, roseate spoonbill, etc. There were bear here not too long ago but now you have to go further into the interior. There are dolphins and manatees and sting rays and sharks in the water too, of course.

3:56:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...


Reports say that she's had her mouth wired shut. Please God - please tell me it's true!

4:06:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Wow Fogg. Your place sounds like paradise and in a much different way than the Jimmy Buffet version. I am very jealous.

And LOL on the Coultergeist. I was surprised you didn't blog it, knowing how fond you are of her. :)

I didn't blog it because I hadn't seen any confirmation but the universal response around the comment sections where it was discussed seemed to be -- yes, there really is a God.

6:01:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

I forgot to mention the snakes and the Jurassic sized insects.

Jimmy Buffet and his boat Margaritaville showed up at a local marina last year - a friend sent me a photo. If you like drinking those things in a dockside tiki-hut, this is the place.

Ha - any deity worth his salt would have sewn her mouth shut, shrunk her head and hung it from his rear view mirror.

11:45:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

LOL Fogg. My lifetime dream is to open up a tiki bar near the sea in my golden years.

As for the Coultergeist, well, I can't imagine why the Great Spirit didn't think of that himself...

8:52:00 AM  

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