Friday, June 24, 2005

Mad As A Cow, & I'm Not Going To Take It!

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Photo: One Millions Cows Were Incinerated In U.K. Due To Mad Cow*

Very interesting development in the mad cow story that has been in the news lately - see here. Hopefully, my readers have been bothering to follow this story. In many cases the advice (F.D.R.s) that we have nothing to fear but fear itself it true - or mostly true. Many times fear just makes things worse.

Which is why I tend to think of myself as skeptical. When I heard that jets crashed into one of the Twin Towers, I recalled a documentary on the Twin Towers which I had watched on PBS, and remembered one of the designers said it was designed to stand up to an airplane crash. I thought, they'll be some dead, but the towers will be repaired - and we'll all learn from the lesson, and life will go on.

It wasn't too long after that comforting thought I realized I was wrong - there was reason to fear - as I watched in horror, as the towers fell.

The Mad Cow Disease is one of the most hideous diseases to suffer, and die from - whether your a cow, or a person who ate some cow. Die of stroke, or a heart attack, and often times you don't even know what hit you - bammo - lights out.

But Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (which is the name for Mad Cow in humans) is nothing to sneer at. Unlike lung cancer you can't give up a vice to avoid getting it. Unlike heart disease you can't take a cholesterol pill to help you avoid it.

The only way to avoid it is to stop eating beef. And most, including myself derive a great deal of pleasure from eating beef. It's true that Mad Cow isn't known to effect birds (chicken, and turkey are safe), fish, pork, or lamb. But beef really is king in America - and everyone abroad, once their standard of living rises high enough become addicted to beef too.

This make is very difficult to believe that beef will simply go away, it won't, anymore than sex went away after HIV.

Like sex, after the dawn of AIDS, beef can now be seen as either safe beef, or unsafe beef. We for the most part leave it to the cattle industry, meat processing industry, and the government to keep beef safe in America.

Beef is a huge industry.

So when other country's beef started killing people we took appropriate steps to keep our beef safe.

At least so we thought.

A few years ago one cow with Mad Cow disease was discovered in this country - it never made it to anyone's dinner plate. The culprit was from Canada, and Canadian beef imports were banned. That ban was lifted recently.

Now we see the second confirmed case of Mad Cow in the U.S.

What is interesting about this case is that the cow did not come from Canada.

Why is that so very interesting, and important?

And here we get to why I'm writing all this for my blog.

The reason why it is so important is that it shows there's something wrong with the system of protecting the consumer from this disease.

Some beef industry spin masters are saying things like, "We stopped this animal from entering the food chain, which shows our system works." Total absolute bullshit! Pardon my french.

The only way a cow can get Mad Cow is if it consumes PRIONS. PRIONS are simple proteins that by their shape manage to twist other like proteins into becoming PRIONS. The darned things aren't alive, so there's no way to kill them. They are so simple that they are hard to destroy.

Because PRIONS are not alive, and are so simple you can't kill them, or confuse their chemical structure with sanitizer, heat, or radiation (actually heat will work, but only if you burn the cow to the point where it becomes a pile of ash).

So where do PRIONS come from?

They come from neurological matter - brain matter, and possibly spinal cord fiber from PRION "infected" animals.

Cows don't "catch" PRIONS from other cows like getting a cold, or through sex. They have to get it from eating PRIONS.


So the cow that just died of Mad Cow was a cannibal?

The conclussion is that it must have been in some way being fed feed with ground up brain matter from other cows mixed in.


In fact that law's enforcement is absolutely critical to keeping the entire beef industry in the U.S. from crumbling like the twin towers. Without it, an epidemic like that seen in England is only a matter of time.

Which means we have a real problem on our hands, because somehow that cow did come down with Mad Cow, which implies someone has been breaking the rules on rendered cow brain matter - and has mixed it in as a cheap source of protein into cow feed.

No one seems to be talking about the implications.

If one cow came down with Mad Cow from bad feed, then that means that other cows may have PRIONS in their brains, but just haven't shown symptoms yet. In fact these other cows may end up on your serving plate without ever having shown any symptoms.

Now, you might say, "Well, as long as I don't eat cow brains, and stick to hamburger, or steaks, I'll be fine, right?".

Wrong! Because it only take one little mistake in the slaughterhouse and the spinal fluids end up on your meat. At which point the meat should be thrown away.

But if they don't catch it, or don't want to waste a big chunck of expensive meat and simply ignore it - then that contaminated meat ends up at the local grocery store - or at Hardees!


It looks like a coverup is taking place about this second Mad Cow incident, and I'd bet it's only a matter of time until dozens, perhaps hundreds of cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease hits the U.S. The Japanese, who love cheap American beef has already banned it - I'd be considering very carefully why they won't allow our beef into their country the next time you take a stroll through the meat section of your local grocer.

*PhotoSource: Uncredited. Obtained From The Interenet. Probably Under Copyright.
eys: The Village of Jerome, Springfield, Central, Illinois, Local, State, Political, Commentary, Mad Cow Disease

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Deadly Feasts by Richard Rhodes (The Making of the Atomic Bomb) does mad cow justice. It's a good read.

email jp






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