Archive for the ‘terrorism’ Category

My Ultimatum to the Animal Liberation Front (ALF)

29 July 2009

If you go to the website of the Animal Liberation Front Press Office, you’ll find posts reporting and glorifying various “visits” by ALF activists to targeted institutions. Most of these include arson, graffiti, spray-painting homes, vandalizing vehicles, etc.

To be completely fair, no human or animal has ever been physically harmed in an ALF attack. All the damage done has been to inanimate objects (i.e. cars, homes, businesses) and this is in keeping with ALF’s stated goal to avoid harm to all living beings.

While many of us are squeamish about laboratory testing on animals, the simple Truth is that animal testing has yielded many benefits for humans. Medications for all types of diseases and numerous medical procedures (e.g. blood transfusions, organ transplants) were first tested on animals before any human patient ever underwent such a procedure. The simple fact that many people are alive today, who might otherwise have died, shows the value of these procedures validates the animal testing that was undergone during the research stages.

Animal testing is still needed, though there are some out there who make the claim that it is an unreliable or outdated science. The total number of animals currently being used in labs across the USA is dwarfed by the sheer number of ducks we eat in this country, for example. That’s ducks by themselves and we could make a similar comparison to the total number of lab animals versus the number of cows, pigs, chickens, etc that are killed for meat everyday in America. Yet, groups like the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) continue their campaign of terror against research labs and the people who work in them. Researchers have been threatened, their homes vandalized, false rumors have been circulated about them and so on. It takes a lot of courage to work in an animal testing lab these days.

In light of recent attacks at UC Berkely and UC Irvine, I have decided to issue an ultimatum to the Animal Liberation Front and its supporters. Here goes:

Dear ALF & Friends,

I see that you have been busy vandalizing homes and businesses, leaf-letting buildings, sending threatening letters, etc to people that are involved, even in the most peripheral way, in animal testing. I am certain that you do this because you think animal testing is bad and you want it to stop. I’m not going to try to convince you otherwise, because people who carryout these “visits” are usually True Believers who couldn’t have their minds changed by me or anyone else.

I understand that you don’t want animals to die by human hands for any reason and you would never allow yourselves to be the cause of an animal’s death.

Since the passage of laws and the threats of prison time has not deterred some of you from bombings, arson and vandalism, I have decided to try another method of convincing you to Cease & Desist your attacks on animal testing labs.

See this rabbit?

bunnyCute, isn’t he?

Well, guys and gals of ALF, I have decided that every time you people go out to bomb something, burn something down or send threatening letters/phone calls, I am going to travel to a local farm and pay for a nice, fat, juicy rabbit. This rabbit will then be killed, skinned, gutted, hacked into pieces and wrapped. I will then take this rabbit home, cook it and then eat it.

But, maybe I couldn’t find a rabbit one day. What to do?

No problem.

See this calf?

BabyCalfYou know, it’s been a long time since I had a nice serving of tender veal. Oh, yeah! Makes my mouth water, just thinking about it. I’m think that, if I can’t get a rabbit one day that I might head over to the supermarket and get myself some calf’s liver. My mom used to make the best veal for dinner and I am sure I could figure-out the recipe from memory.

Naturally, if you guys keep bombing, burning and otherwise terrorizing people, somebody is going to notice that somebody (i.e. me) has suddenly taken liking to rabbit meat or veal or goose liver pate, etc and start stocking it regularly at my local supermarket. If I can get enough people to follow-along, then more rabbits will be killed for their meat and more calves slaughtered for their livers. Heck, even goose liver could go down to a reasonable price with the increase in demand.

Now,  I normally don’t eat a lot of rabbit, veal or goose liver. Not out of any moral objections, just because I got tired of eating rabbit all the time at my grandfather’s house when I was a kid. He took me out hunting and that’s how I learned to butcher rabbits myself. I got tired of rabbit meat after eating so much of it. Veal was something we only ate on special occasions and goose liver was too high-falootin’ for our dinner table.

But, I am willing to break my habits if it means ending your reign of terror on animal research labs and their employees. Rabbit meat is pretty cheap and easily found around here, so I’ll stick with rabbit for awhile, especially since I learned so many ways to prepare it.

For every attack on an animal research lab or an employee of same, a rabbit, calf or goose will pay for your actions with its life.

So, if you don’t set fire to a lab, spray graffiti on a wall, set-off a bomb or whatever, the bunnies will live.

If you decide to go ahead with your terrorism campaign, cute little bunnies will die and it will be your fault!

These are my demands. Ignore them and bunnies will pay the consequences.

Their lives are in your hands.

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“9/11 Truth” Conspiracies Debunked, Part Four

12 June 2009

I received several replies to previous entries from “Terry Conspiracy” -who I suspect of being Alex Jones or some one who knows him, since he keeps trying to plug Jones’ website in his replies, even though I delete that part – and his replies consist of a mixture of personal insults directed at me, as well as repeats of previous 9/11 Truther misinformation.

Rather than allow him to dominate the reply section of my blog, much the same way as Colloidal Silver proponents tried to do when I wrote about that, I’m going to reply to some of his points here.

It is obvious to me that Terry has never taken the time to watch any of the videos I have linked to in previous entries. It is apparent that he is fully convinced of a conspiracy and will not entertain even the possibility that he is wrong.

 

    Thermite and Thermate 

 

Nano Thermite: the “scientific paper” which is mentioned by 9/11 conspiracists is actually a Open Access website, which bills itself as a scientific journal. The very fact that this “scientific paper” has not been quoted in any other science journal doesn’t bode well for its accuracy. The OA journal, mentioned in a previous blog, is never quoted by other science journals. In the scientific community, if your paper doesn’t get read, it has no value. If it doesn’t get quoted by other researchers, it is pointless to publish there in the first place. The big hue and cry over this paper is that it tells conspiracists what they want to hear. Never mind all the scientists and engineers who present findings to the contrary, this one paper is all they want to hear about. Thermite was used by the cleanup crews to remove the large metal pieces of the structures that could not be removed as a whole pice. The claim that thermite brought the towers down is not backed-up by survivors, who would have seen thermite burning, as well as the large amount of smoke.

Thermate residue: okay, thermite-theorists say that residue from thermite was found on-site, ergo thermite was used. It goes like this: if A, B, C, and D are all components of X, then X was definitely present. This may be true only if A,B,C and D could come from no other source. Let’s go through what the components of thermite would be and see if there could have been other sources from the WTC site.

Thermate ingrediants and their likely sources from WTC:

  1. iron: found in paint and electronic devices;
  2. sulphur: the third most common construction material in the WTC was gypsum-based drywall, which is 18.62% sulphur.
  3. aluminum: WTC facade, the 767s and vehicles;
  4. potassium: used in concrete;
  5. manganese: used in structural steel, paint, batteries and ceramics;
  6. flourine: used in Freon and 200,000 lbs of Freon cooled the WTC complex, which was the largest air-conditioning system in the USA;
  7. titanium: used in paper and paint, which were very common at the WTC. Both 767s used in the attacks were 2% titanium and WTC7 was clad in polished steel and titanium;

So, all seven items from this list were already common at the WTC site prior to the attacks.

About 2 billion pounds of dust covered Lower Manhatten after 9/11. Steven Jones, one of the authors of the “study” estimated that it would have taken 1000 pounds of thermate to bring down each tower, for a total of 3000 pounds of thermate. Since thermate is 2% sulphur. that means 60 pounds of sulphur would be used. Based on Jones’ estimates, the WTC dust would have consisted of 0.000003% sulphur. But, USGC tests showed that the dust consisted of 5.4% sulphur. Where did all that extra sulphur come from?

Okay, if you assume that thermate was used to bring down the towers, then a good way to make that conclusion would be to find the residue of thermate in the WTC dust. This residue is only caused by the use of thermate and there would be no other way to explain its presence. The two main byproducts of thermate use are:

  1. aluminum oxide (41%)
  2. barium nitrate (29%)

What shootsdown the idea that thermate was used to bring down the towers is that neither of these elements was found either by the USGS or by Steven Jones himself. Finding aluminum is not the same as finding aluminum oxide, which has three oxygen atoms.

So, while we can find all seven component elements of thermate at the WTC site, we can easily explain their presence. However, 9/11 Truthers cannot explain the absence of the residue of thermate use at the site. If they could not find aluminum oxide and barium nitrate at the WTC site, then no thermate use occurred. It would be impossible to use thermate to bringdown the WTC towers without leaving traces of these two elements.

Lack of aluminum oxide + lack of barium nitrate = no thermate used at WTC.

Attack on the Pentagon on 9/11

I know I’m wasting my time expecting Terry to watch a video, since he obviously never has. But, you can see the actual damage caused by the 757 as it made its way to the Pentagon, which included:

  1. knocking down a lamp post, which damaged a taxi cab;
  2. knocked down another lamp pole, which fell near some trees;
  3. a third lamp pole being struck caused the light fixture to enter starboard engine intake;
  4. a fourth lightpole was struck, which caused the engine to billow smoke;
  5. a fifth lampost was struck and knocked-down; and
  6. a generator and ground structure were struck and damaged right before the plane hit the building.

All of these are outlined, along with photographs in the following video

If the Pentagon were hit by a missle, as conspiracists like to claim, then how did a missle knockdown all those lamposts, the generator and the ground structure? A missle would have bypassed all of these and simply hit the building.

Despite what 9/11 Truthers claim, there was a lot of  wreckage found at the site of the attack, including airplane debris and personal items of the passengers. Pieces of the 75 fouund after the attack included portions of the fuselage, landing gear, doors, engine parts, and the cockpit.

As far as the damage to the building, as compared to the actual size of the jet, the body of a 757 measures 12 feet, four inches wide. Measurements of the hole indicate that it is about 18 feet wide. Considering how the plane entered the building at an angle, the proportions match-up pretty well. Damage from the wings impacting the Pentagon can be seen in the video linked above.

Despite claims that the building wall is 9 feet of reinforced concrete, the exterior wall is actually only 18 inches thick at the impact site.

Conclusion

You know, I could go on all day with this. But, I don’t have the inclination or time.

Conspiracy theorists believe what they want anmd will not accept any evidence to the contrary. I would like to respond to this statement from Terry Conspiracy

spyderblog, you should retract & apologize or lose all credibility in my eyes.

Terry, in my eyes, you don’t have any credibility of any kind. You refused to watch any of the videos whose links I have provided and I think you were simply looking for a new convert to your cause. You people cherry-pick isolated items and tout them as evidence, when they really aren’t evidence.

I will not retract and I have nothing to apologize for, to you or anyone else.

Believe what you want, but I think the 9/11 “Truth” movement is losing steam and will hopefully soon be relegated along with the conspiracy theories of reptile men and fake moon landings.

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Militant Veganism

4 May 2009

In case people think, due to my last post, that I am somehow opposed to protecting animals from cruel treatment: I am fully in support of laws to protect animals from cruel treatment by humans.

Partly, I support such laws because when people are cruel to animals, they tend to extend that behavior to other people. Some one who beats their dog or cat is probably going to take a swing at me if I get them mad enough and they are more likely to take that swing if they have a history of animal abuse.

Furthermore, I support protecting animals from abuse because it is a mark of civilized behavior for people to be concerned for the welfare of animals over whom they have power. The more humane we are to animals, the better people we are as a whole.

Some people take that a step further and become vegetarians or even vegans, feeling that it is immoral to kill animals for food. That’s fine with me. But, I have a problem with people for whom their vegetarianism or veganism is some kind of fucking religion and that all meat-eaters (actually, omnivores) are immoral, evil scum because we eat animal flesh. I used to hangout at a local store that caters to vegans and I would hear the daily rants against the eating of meat. It seemed that becoming a vegetarian/vegan was like a religion, with its own group of fundamentalists out to spread the word even to those who didn’t wish to hear it. Instead of the “you’re going to Hell” argument, I’d hear the “you’re murdering innocent animals” argument, which did nothing to convince me, though it might have convinced some.

Most people don’t like the idea that we are being cruel to the helpless, especially animals and most Americans have never killed an animal that they would go on to eat later. One of my earliest memories was seeing my uncle slaughter a rabbit for the family dinner to be held later that night. I didn’t eat any rabbit, but I don’t remember if it was because of personal choice or because there simply wasn’t enough to go around.

One YouTube user who engaged in the “meat-eaters are evil” tirade is a young man named Onision. For awhile, his videos consisted of the omnivore-bashing that I had heard years ago, so I took little interest in his channel and didn’t watch more than a few of his videos. Other users took exception to his rants and released videos of their own. I understand that Onision even engaged in a bit of DMCA filing against users he felt had illegally copied portions of his videos, despite such actions being covered by Fair Use. I am not aware of the outcome of these filings, having taken little interest in it. Later, Onision admitted that he was an actor and that he had been playing a role. Being a YouTube Partner, he made money as his videos got more views. A good way to generate publicity for himself and make a buck. But, his latest video consists of him whining that he is receiving hate mail from other users, as well as his still  being the subject of videos made by other users.

Oh, and he’s also upset that people are mispronouncing his name. Whatever.

Kind of hard to put the genie back in the bottle, Onision. You wanted all the publicity and now you have it. Deal with it and stop whining.

A bit more radical than simple YouTUbe rants are the animal libertation groups, like Animal Liberation Front (ALF) and Earth Liberation Front (ELF) both of whom have found themselves on lists of extremist organizations compiled by law enforcement agencies, including the FBI here in the United States. Both encourage people to become vegans, I guess because raising cows for milk and chickens for eggs somehow counts as enslavement. I wonder what these cows and chickens would be doing if people didn’t at least need them around for that.

Both ALF and ELF have websites where the latest “Direct Actions” against people and companies that are seen as exploiting animals or harming the environment are featured. ANything from simple vandalism to outright arson get mentioned without the slighest hint of condemnation from the webhosts. Despite the fact that no person is usually harmed by their actions doesn’t remove the fact that property was destroyed and people have, in fact, been threatened with serious bodily harm.

One of the most obvious cases of a radical animal rights group being their own worst enemy is the case of Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) whose primary target is Huntington Life Sciences, which is a contract animal-testing company founded in 1952 in England, now with facilities in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire and Eye, Suffolk in the UK; New Jersey in the U.S.; and in Japan.  HLS is the largest such commercial operation in Europe and conducts tests on around 75,000 animals every year — including rats, rabbits, pigs, dogs, and primates — testing pharmaceutical products, agricultural chemicals, industrial chemicals, and foodstuffs on behalf of private clients worldwide.  SHAC was successful in getting HLS’ bank accounts closed and their listing removed from both the London and New York Stock Exchanges. In fact, they nearly drove HLS out of business.

But, SHAC went too far. Too far by a longshot. They engaged in threats against people who either worked for HLS or did business with them in some fashion, such as HLS’s business partners, their business partners, insurers, caterers, cleaners, children’s nursery schools, and office suppliers. There was even a letter-writing campaign where an employee of a company that did business with HLS was targeted in a campaign where eight hundred letters were sent to his neighbors accusing him of being a pedophile, the police had to assure his neighbors that the accusations were false. Threats, intimidation, vandalism or vehicles and property became their modus operandi and Huntington Life Sciences found itself having to move to the United States and takeout high-interest loans to stay in business. Actions against HLS became even more violent with physical assaults on the persons of HLS staff. Huntington Life Sciences’ marketing director Andrew Gay was attacked on his doorstep with a chemical spray to his eyes which left him temporarily blinded!

Then came Operation Achilles, where much of SHAC’s leadership was arrested, tried, convicted and imprisioned. HLS was able to move back to the UK and the majority of the attacks against them have ceased.

But, even without the threats, vandalism, etc. SHAC almost won! They almost drove HLS out of business, which is what they wanted. It was only because they decided to act like a bunch of badasses that the police cracked down on them and imprisoned their leadership. If they had stuck with legal protests, undercover investigations and whistleblowing, SHAC could have triumphed over HLS anyway. But, as I said, they shot themselves in the foot when they began to think they were all clones of Che Guevara or something and took their campaign in a direction where it had no business going.

Now, Huntington Life Sciences is back in the UK and rebuilding itself. Naturally, they are likely very exhausted from all of this and it will take them time to recover fully, but that will come in time.

Okay, so what would have happened if Huntington had gone out of business? Would animal experimentation have ceased?

Nope. It would have simply moved overseas to a country where animal protection laws are not as strict or which may not even exist.

You see, animal experimentation is a vital part of medical research. It has led to vast improvements of medical care for people, including the polio vaccine, insulin, tuberculosis medicines and so on.

Common medical procedures that we take for granted today were pioneered with animal research before they were tried on people, such as blood transfusions were first tried on dogs and penicillin was tried on mice. These are just a few examples of animal research leading to important medical benefits for humans.

We all see the films put out by animal rights activists that show dogs and cats being used as lab animals. But, the fact is that dogs, cats and primates amount for 1% of all lab animals, with the rest consisting of rats, mice, rabbits and guinea pigs which are not endangered species by any means and their species will certainly survive a small percentage being used for animal research.

In the USA, we eat more ducks every year than the total number of animals used in research. As we also consume more chickens, cattle and pigs than even the highest estimate of the number of total animals of all species used for research purposes. The United States has the most stringent requirements for animal research than nay country in the world. You just can’t go and start injecting animals with pharmaceuticals because you feel like experimenting. You have to get approval and there are also strict requirements for the quality of life for the animal while it is being used for these experiments. An animal that is uder a great deal of stress due to pain will not provide good data for a medicine’s effectiveness, so researchers must not subject the animal to more discomfort than is absolutely neccessary for the experiments. Violations of the law can result in research grant money being withdrawn and there can be civil and criminal liability involved for the persons responsible. This is why I am not opposed to groups like People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) engaging in undercover investigations to expose violations of the law to the public and the media.  Adherance to the law results in better research, which leads to more accurate data, which leads to improved benefits for people.

While there are other ways to do research on pharmaceuticals (e.g. in vitro testing, MRI scanning, computer modeling and micro-dosing) these are supplementary to animal research and they do have their limitations. They cannot completely replace animal testing, no matter how much we wish they could. If people think that animal testing is less expensive financially than the alternatives I mentioned, then you’re wrong. Animal testing is far more expensive, time-consuming and heavily-regulated than the supplementary methods, so there is no way for medical researchers to save money by experimenting on animals. It would be cheaper if the other methods were as effective as animal testing, but they are not.

There are between 25 to 26 million animals of all species being used for animal research in the USA, which is a drop in the ocean compared to the sheer number of animals killed for food. If animal rights people wanted to save the most amount of animals, they’d be trying to get the rest of us to become vegetarians or vegans. But, there’s not much chance of that, so they go for what is a far easier target, one that they can easily pull the heartstrings of otherwise intelligent people to support them.

Here’s a video that you can have a look at to get a better understanding of the issue. The speaker is Tom Holder, spokesman of Speaking of Research, who was a key member of the UK movement “Pro-Test”, which helped win the British public over on the issue of animal testing. In this video, Mr Holder challenges some of the misinformation that is spread around by animal rights groups on the subject of vivisection. The presentation was filmed at a Speaking of Research talk at Oregon Health & Sciences University.

I am all in favor of private groups and individuals whistleblowing on researchers that abuse the animals under their care, as was done to HLS by SHAC in the early part of their campaign. Groups like PETA have done much good in this country by exposing animal abusers, who can then be prosecuted under the law. Naming and Shaming animal abusers with accurate information does the most good for animals and for the people the research will benefit.

Of course, PETA wouldn’t go for the idea of animal testing continueing, having “Until All the Cages are Empty” as a slogan. But, you’d think that they’d be more understanding, since former PETA Vice President, Mary-Beth Sweetland, is a diabetic who injects herself daily with insulin—a treatment tested and perfected in animals. She admitted her treatment still contains some animal products, but it’s okay – for her – because using these animal products helps her stay alive to help more animals. Naturally, she doesn’t see herself as a hypocrite, which is what I think she is. I mean, if it’s not okay to experiment on animals or use animals for medical purposes to benefit humans, then it should mean any humans, especially people who are trying to stop animal research.

Is it just me or is there a bit of “Do as I say, not as I do” going-on here?

Still, Ms Sweetland does claim that she uses less insulin today since she adopted a vegan diet. So, she has to have fewer dead animals on her conscience.

I do have to give my support to PETA for their campaign against animal abuse in circuses. Their investigative work did unearth horrific treatment of circus animals. But, I think that abusers should be punished, without the need or goal to close-down circuses around the country. If a circus cannot train their animals without torturing them, then the circus owners should quit the business.

Let me boil it down for you: with laws in-place to protect animals from abuse, those laws should be enforced and transgressors punished. If an animal at a research lab, at a circus, on a farm or in some one’s home is the victim of abuse, then the abuser should be Named & Shamed,  brought to justice and punished under the law.

It is not the place or the right of groups like PETA, ALF, ELF, Sea Shepherd, SHAC or any other organization to take the law into their own hands and act as judge, jury and executioner. A civilized society cannot function any other way. It is groups like these that give vegans a bad name.

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Extremism in the Anti-Whaling Movement

3 May 2009

Sea Shepherd is one of the two best-known anti-whaling organizations in the world, the other being Greenpeace.

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has appointed itself the guardian of the world’s oceans, often undertaking direct actions that include the ramming of whaling ships at sea and the sinking of whaling ships while they are in harbor. They have also been seen throwing objects onto the decks of Japanese whaling ships, including small rockets and butyric acid, which can irritate the skin and damage the eyes.

As an American, I grew-up hearing the message of the anti-whaling movement and, until recently, supported it. However, in light of recent events, I have to part company with Sea Shepherd and Greenpeace.

Let me be clear: I am appalled at how closely many species of whales came to extintion due to overwhaling. Some whales (e.g. Humpback, minke) have come back strongly and have healthy populations again, while others (e.g. Blue, Sperm) are still in trouble. But, with protections given them by the international community – due, in large part, by extensive lobbying by Greenpeace – many whale species have come back from the brink and are now thriving. Personally, I don’t think I could eat whale meat. Yet, there are some groups of people for whom eating whale meat is a part of their culture and history.

The Makah Indians of Washington State are one such group who have a treaty with the United States government that allows them to harvest whales. This treaty goes back to 1855 and, according to federal law, the Makah are entitled to hunt and kill one baleen whale, typically a gray whale, each year. However, archaeological records and oral history indicates that humpback whales were hunted as well. Unfortunately for the Makah, Sea Shepherd doesn’t want anyone to hunt whales for any reason, even if it’s only one whale a year and worked very hard to interrupt the whale hunt. Despite that, the Makah did succeed in killing a single whale back in 1999 and the meat was distributed among the tribe and neighboring tribes. Sea Shepherd accused the Makah, without justification, of wanting to sell the whale meat on the open market, but this would have been a violation of the law and the Makah disputed this claim. As it was, the meat was distributed freely, to much celebration within the tribe. SInce the year 2000, the Makah have faced numerous obsticales in their quest to resum whaling, even though an indigenous tribe in Russia is allowed to whale and the International Whaling Commission does allow for indigenous tribes with a history of whaling to take a certain number of whales per year. Unfortunately for the Makah, the USA is a nation overwhelmingly opposed to whaling and the US government will not go out of its way to allow a small tribe in the Pacific Northwest to start killing even one whale a year, even if the species of whale they will be hunting is not endangered or even threatened.

That’s just one example, but I think it shows that a small tribe of Indians found itself on the losing end of a battle with a group of overwhelmingly Caucasian people who think they knew better than a bunch of Indians.

Now, Sea Shepherd faces-off against Japan, a nation that has managed to attain an exemption to the global whaling ban by stating that its whaling is done for the purposes of scientific research. A common accusation is that the research is merely a smokescreen for commercial whaling. However, Japanese marine scientists have assembled a sizable body of research and forwarded it to the International Whaling Commission, who has admitted that the information obtained by the Japanese was, in fact, valuable.

Japan has a long history of whaling, as do Russia, Greenland, Norway and Iceland. Japan has found itself in the crosshairs of Sea Shepherd in their “Operation Musashi” named after the 17th-century Japanese strategist Miyamoto Musashi, where the Sea Shepherd’s flagship, the Steve Irwin, purposely rammed Japanese whaling ships and a ship belonging to Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research. The damage to the Japanese ships was considerable, as was the damage to the Steve Irwin. I also read that Greenpeace has engaged in the ramming of Japanese whalers in the past few years, though whether that was an official Greenpeace action or just that of a zealous ship captain, I am not sure.

So, it seems that both Greenpeace  – which has historically disavowed aggressive and violent acts for the pupose of defending whales from hunting, even expelling Paul Watson, the founder of Sea Shepherd, from its ranks when he directly intervened in the Canada seal hunt by getting into a physical altercation with seal hunters – and Sea Shepherd have taken to using their ships to ram Japanese whaling ships. Sea Shepherd makes it a regular practise, though.

I have a serious problem with this. It seems that Sea Shepherd has decided that Japan is some kind of “Bad Guy Nation” that Sea Shepherd needs to teach a lesson by ramming their ships and endangering their crews. The idea that a sovereign country, like Japan, must somehow answer to a private organization with no law enforcement authority whatsoever is beyond laughable.

Let me tell you something about Japan: they have an ancient culture of which they are very proud. They may have a reputation for being polite to the extreme, but even the most polite person in the world has limits to their endurance and I think we could be seeing that limit being reached very soon. In recent years, Japanese whalers have attempted to fend-off Sea Shepherd’s attacks by spraying water at the deck of the Steve Irwin and trying to flood the inflatable Zodiacs that Sea Shepherd uses to harass the whalers. Also, the use of LRAD has been employed, using concentrated soundwaves to disorient the Steve Irwin‘s crew and try to hold them back. Given the fact that Japanese ships were rammed anyway shows the lack of success of these methods against a determined enemy.

When word got out that the Japanese whaling fleet would include a Japanese military vessel, Sea Shepherd was understandably worried. It seemed that the normally passive Japanese were going to up the ante. Instead of taking abuse, they were getting ready to dish it out. That did not turnout to be the case, however.

In case you’re wondering if Sea Shepherd and Greenpeace coordinate with each other, they have exchanged jibes in the past with Watson referring to Greenpeace as “the Avon ladies of the environmental movement”.

While Paul Watson might think that he has a free hand in dealing with the Japanese, he seems to forget that Japan is a sovereign country. While the international community is overwhelming against commercial whaling, no nation is going to impose sanctions against Japan or cutoff diplomatic ties with them in protest of their whaling activites. They can send verbal protests, but that’s about it. On top of it all, the Japanese government has a legal right under international law to protect its citizens from attack in international waters, especially since no other nation seems to be willing to do so. As with every government, the people of Japan expect theirs to protect them from harm, especially from terrorism.

Furthermore, Japan has shown a great deal of restraint so far. Given that more extreme measure could have been employed by them and still could be, means that Sea Shepherd is on borrowed time. While the Japanese public is not overwhelmingly against whaling so far with less than one-fourth opposing whaling in recent polls, their news media makes no bones about calling Sea Shepherd terrorists, which is what they seem to be acting like. They are using violence in an attempt to coerce another group of people to act a certain way. In this case, Japan to give-up whaling. The fact that no one has been killed yet or seriously injured is beside the point. Groups like the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) have, like Sea Shepherd, damaged or destroyed private property. The United States government has labelled both the ELF and ALF as domestic terrorists, even though neither group has ever killed anyone. So, why does Sea Shepherd get a pass? Is it because they are trying to “save the whales”?

Is this how it works: you burn down a building where animals are experimented on or are being raised for food or their fur and you are a terrorist; but, damage a ship at sea or sink a ship in harbor to stop them from killing whales and you’re not a terrorist? Even if nobody is killed or even hurt, you cannot burndown a building for either the ELF or ALF without having the FBI track you down, but sink a ship to protest whaling and you can travel the world in full view of the media and you’re a hero to millions?

Most Americans are against cruelty to animals in any way. A lot of us try to buy products that have not been tested on animals and wearing fur has become a social stigma. Even so, most of us don’t like the idea of people going-around and torching buildings for any reason. But, as long as these whaling ships are rammed or sunk in waters far away, we seem to be very tolerant of groups like Sea Shepherd. I wonder how people would feel if a whaling ship stopped in an American harbor for some reason and got sunk by Sea Shepherd supporters. I wonder how tolerant our government would be when the terrorism that has been aimed at Japan and Norway suddenly found its way into an American harbor. I think Sea Shepherd’s fortunes would change overnight. That’s why it will never happen. I think Paul Watson isn’t stupid enough to take a chance on the American public seeing what he really does happening in their own waters. That’s why he’ll keep it out of our eyesight.

I understand that people like whales. They’re smart and cute (sort of) and we like seeing them swimming in the ocean. While the world may cringe at Japan killing these animals, one of Sea Shepherd’s most fervent supporters, Australia, seems to be getting a pass beyond passes for killing another animal that we all think is cute: kangaroos. In Australia, kangaroos are being killed in the most inhumane fashion, even baby kangaroos are being yanked from their mother’s pouch and stomped to death. But, that’s okay with Australia, it seems. Kill the ‘roos. Aussies also seem to be going-about the killing of the Dingos, wild dogs indigenous to Australia. By the way, dingos are an endangered species. But, adult dingos aren’t very cute, though the puppies are.

Oh, I know, Australians are our friends, right? After all, we were at war with Japan about sixty years ago. So, even after all this time, the West seems to think we can still treat the Japanese as The Enemy. In the comments section of YouTube videos related to Sea Shepherd, I have seen numerous comments where the Japanese are referred to as “Japs”. Ah yes, a little racism to save the whales, eh boys and girls? Does it make you feel good to call them “Japs” when your only excuse is that they are killing whales?

Anybody who wants to hate the Japanese for killing whales and call them “Japs” for it, must now be true to their racism and throw away anything that was either made or designed in Japan. That means no TVs, CD/DVD players, computers, etc. Yeah, toss ’em out or be a hypocrite you racist fucks.

Yeah, I’m calling you racists and FUCK YOU if you don’t like it.

Japan has every right to expect nations with which they have treaties with to make every effort to protect Japanese nationals abroad and on the open sea. The fact that the USA and Australia have dragged their feet on this, due entirely to popular opposition to whaling and no other reason, shows the lingering feeling in the West that we know everything and our way is the best and only way. Anyone who disagrees with us is a barbarian who has to be beaten into submission. That’s how we’ve dealt with the East in the past, like the Opium Wars where the United Kingdom forced China to allow the importation of opium, which resulted in millions of Chinese becoming addicted and the nation falling into ruin. But, by G-d in Heaven, the Britsh East India Company needed the money and wasn’t going to let national sovereignty get in the way. This is simply more of the same with Japan and whaling.

I hope Paul Watson and his army of followers and supporters can realize before it’s too late that Japan has shown remarkable restraint so far. But, history shows that you can push the Japanese so far and you can publicly shame them only so many times before they strike back in ways you won’t like very much. If the international community won’t do anything, then Japan may have to do it themselves.

What seems to be lacking in this whole equation is that Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd seem to have done little to try convincing the Japanese people to give-up whaling once and for all. Simply citing the high mercury content in whale meat should be enough to start with. Telling people that whales are cute and intelligent won’t work, since a lot of animals we eat are cute sometimes, especially when they’re young. Little baby chicks come to mind, as do calves. So cute when young, so delicious when grownup. I don’t eat veal. Not on any moral grounds, I just don’t like it. Color me contradictory, if you wish.

I understand that onboard Sea Shepherd and Greenpeace ships, only vegetarian or vegan food is served to the crew. So, a little militant veganism is at play here, don’t you think? Historically, Japanese cuisine contains a lot of vegetable and seaweed, with most of the meat being fish, so giving-up meat might not be too much of a stretch for some in Japan, especially with its strong Buddhist tradition.

But, if anyone is going to try to convince Japan to give-up whaling, it cannot be either Greenpeace or Sea Shepherd. Once they started ramming Japanese ships, that was all over. It would have to be some other organization that hasn’t attacked Japanese ships or fishermen.

Anyway, I’m going to take a nap. When I log back in, I anticipate some nutcase calling me names or threatening me in the comments section.

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