Today, I’m lacking in motivation

But I’ve found all sorts of interesting things on the net.
Like the “Audi-Oh”, a “personal stimulation” device which reacts to sound. Alternet suggests using it to make listening to the news more enjoyable.
Then there’s the website for Simple Living, a great show which airs on PBS. There’s not much on the site, but there are a few video clips there which will give you an idea for what the show is about. Recommended!
I heard a story on NPR (or was it Pacifica) a few days ago, about this video from AgriProcessor shot by PETA, hosted on the GoVeg site. It’s very hard to watch. If you browse the PETA site you’ll find all sorts of stuff that will make you think twice about eating tasty animal flesh. Wouldn’t you rather have a pickle?
This video from Prodigy is pretty disturbing. But then, it’s Prodigy, so I pretty much expected disturbing.
Then there are these two weird decomposition videos. Um, decomposition videos? How bored are these people? Maybe the game industry can use these videos to study better ways to disappear dead-body polygons.
Lastly, I really like this site filled with comparison shots of New York City. Most of them compare a 1930’s shot with a 1990’s shot. Pretty cool stuff.
Hope you’re having a more productive day than I am. 🙂






4 responses to “Today, I’m lacking in motivation”

  1. robin Avatar

    Man that pickle comment made me laugh – in spite of myself. The video you linked to is just horrific. There are so many humane ways to kill animals – if that’s what you have to do. Gah!
    I wonder sometimes how future generations will look back on this time in agribusiness. Size breeds buracracy, which breeds detatchment. It just can’t be the right way to do things!!!

  2. markdeloura Avatar

    The more I read the more I feel that decentralization is really the key to solving so many of our problems. For example, when small farmers raised pigs and crops together, they could use the manure from the pigs to help fertilize their crops, and some of the crops to help feed their pigs. But with factory pig farming, they have so many damned pigs that they have to put all their crap in a big lagoon, creating toxic waste that stinks up the area and is also a hazard to the local drinking water. (See the humane society site for more info.) Beyond that, they also feed the pigs a bunch of antibiotics so that their tight living conditions don’t result in rampant sickness, and they cut off their tails and canine teeth so that the pigs don’t bite each other (they go a little crazy in these tight quarters). Sad stuff.
    I’m happy to see the rise in popularity of the slow food market and farmers markets. But unfortunately our governmental and tax systems encourage businesses to consolidate, so it seems unlikely that we’ll see a major move back to distributed systems. Though solar power and farmers markets give me some rays of hope to focus on.

  3. brian Avatar

    erik marcus’s book vegan: the new ethics of eating has, as you might expect, a ton of this kind of stuff in it.
    in particular it points out things like: raising a small number of hogs at a farm, a farmer can make a huge profit margin on each hog… but as you scale up to trying to raise hundreds or thousands of hogs at once in a single facility, the profit margins get thinner and thinner until you can’t even do things like pay veterinarians to patch up broken bones and stuff, which leads to animal cruelty because the price of treating them humanely puts you in the red… at which point why have the hog farm in the first place?
    as time goes on i am siding with the decentralization viewpoint more and more and not necessarily agreeing with vegetarianism as an ethical system. i don’t really think there’s anything wrong, in theory, with eating other animals. but the american implementation is so egregiously cruel that i just can’t bring myself to support it. (i suppose i could buy organic grain-fed free-range beef or whatever, but frankly after years of not eating flesh i don’t actually feel any desire to; if i really wanted to, maybe i would.)
    i can only dream of a day when food is grown locally and everyone takes a part in it. it’s healthier and cruelty-free, and that’s just the beginning… when you feel an attachment to the source of your food, when you’ve actually picked that head of cabbage with your own hands, it just plain means more and tastes better, and it inspires a respect for the land and the food. eating beef from a cow you raised and took care of and killed yourself, you’re going to feel some reverence that you just don’t get when you pick it up, pre-ground, in a styrofoam container from safeway.
    that’ll be the day. as far as technology goes i am all about centralization, the internet, etc… but when it comes to stuff like food, i’m practically a back-to-the-land-er.

  4. markdeloura Avatar

    Thanks for the book tip Brian – I may have to check that out. I just noticed there’s an recent article on NYTimes that covers this issue as well:
    As I age (like a fine wine, I like to think 😉 ), I grow firmer in my beliefs about the power of decentralization and participation. The more people you have involved with something, or the more companies, generally the stronger the result is. Now of course there are interesting exceptions. But the Internet is a huge example of this – how much more decentralized could it be? Hopefully we’ll never see the Net become a one-way pipe from media conglomerates and global corporations to the rest of the public, like most of the rest of the media has become.
    It is hard to imagine with the number of people in our country a day when people take a bigger part in growing their own food. But it does my heart good to see local P-Patches and farmers markets, and I know that at least some people are interested, and getting involved. It’s a great start.