Sunday, November 30, 2008

throw your hands in the air / like you just don't care

Originally uploaded by therussiansarehere

so, there is now news that brand name baby formula in the u.s. has trace amounts of melamine and another similar compound. melamine is dangerous, because it collects in the kidneys and forms crystals that lead to kidney stones or even kidney failure. this is so utterly outrageous.

if melamine is in america's baby formula than imagine all the other foods it is in. i read a report in the new york times not long ago, about the exponential rise in kidney stones in children. the report said that this rise was probably due to so much salt in the diet of modern kids, but i wonder if maybe it has more to do with melamine in their diets.

you know, it is ridiculous that there are higher security standards on dvds than on baby formula.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

At least my blog is only contaminated with gratuitous grammatical errors

I was struck by the recent news that food products, imported from china, were being held at U.S. ports for more thorough inspection by the FDA. I heard about the concern that Chinese baby formula was tainted with dangerous additives like melamine . But, the news reports about the tainted baby formula, the reporters were always sure to let one know that the U.S. has banned milk imports from China. Little did I know that hundreds of other imported Chinese food products, such as additives, preservatives, and even chicken are consumed by Americans everyday.

You read right-- chicken from china. According to the Washington Post, "Last year, under high-level pressure from China, the USDA passed a rule allowing China to export to the United States chickens that were grown and slaughtered in North America and then processed in China -- a rule that quickly passed through multiple levels of review and was approved the day before Chinese President Hu Jintao arrived in Washington last April."

W-T-F? Yes, it makes perfect fucking sense to slaughter the chickens, send them to China for processing, and then send the processed chicken back to America for consumption. This is dirty capitalism. You see our version of capitalism rewards profits, not efficiency. And this convoluted market is profitable, sure, but not efficient or right. Think of all the energy it takes to send that chicken to China and then send it back. Why should we support a country that builds a coal plant every week, suppresses human rights, and oh yeah--poisons its infants food supply?
One source, for the Washington Post article, said that he had seen Chinese herbal tea manufacturers drive over tea leafs with huge trucks in a warehouse, so that fumes from the trucks would dry leaves faster. Sounds bad? Well it gets worse; China still uses leaded fuel.

Here is a link to the FDA's list of rejected Chinese products in the month of October. The rejections range from a shipment of Pleasure Plus Condoms with holes in them to hot chocolate powder contaminated with Melamine.

What's sad is that consumers aren't even able to make an informed decision, because there are no food origin labels required. How is that for the 'Oh so Glorious Ayn Rand Utopian Free Market'? If capitalists believe in true competition than shouldn't they be for a law requiring food origin labels on all food products? Competition isn't only contingent on the lowest price, it also has a little something to do with quality.

I have more to bitch about, but my boss is calling, so I have to go change her diaper.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

bullshit! bullshit! bullshit!

half of all imported apple juice comes from china. bullshit!

more later.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

my moon, my man

i am sure you have heard of Feist or at least seen the '1234' iPod commercial. '1234' is a good tune, but 'My moon, my man' is my favorite tune off of her record. "My moon, my man' sounds a bit like the band Spoon; its hooky and grooving. The video is great. It is one long shot on moving sidewalk in an airport. Its worth it.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

family portrait

We got all dressed up and had my uncle take our picture. I was thinking about sending out greeting cards this year. You know, so we can show off our handsome family. Maybe I will, maybe I won't. You'll find out soon enough.

p.s. I have been digging on the following bands: MGMT and Department of Eagles.
Google them, Myspace them, or 'Tube them.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Local Man is Confident He Performed Well on Ballot, Despite Hangover (Profile of a Millennial Voter)

It is 8:00 a.m. Chris Libe stumbles out of bed to a harsh world. As he makes his way through his studio apartment, in a desperate search for some aspirin and glass of water, he is greeted by the relics of last night's party; there are empty Pabst Blue Ribbon cans strewn about, an empty bottle of Wild Turkey, two ash trays full of cigarette butts, and a three foot bong hanging precariously on the edge the coffee table. It is 8:00 a.m. and Chris has just realized today is election day and he has to vote. "Oh, fuck man, my head feels like a fucking--it feels like shit, you know. Fuck."

Chris's predicament isn't unique to him, every four years millions of young Americans party the night before they have to go to the polls to vote. It is estimated that such 'hangover voting', as its called, results in huge numbers of unintended Republican votes and an equal number lost votes for Democrats and third-party candidates.

"Its a real problem," says Democratic strategist Coco Rosli. "Often these young Americans don't realize what a disservice they are doing to themselves and our candidates when they drink and vote. They think they can just down a cup of coffee, take three aspirin, have a shot have Yeager and they'll be fine, but the opposite is true." In fact, Rosli says that there are documented cases of habitual-marijuana users actually voting against propositions to legalize small amounts of marijuana because they are so lit.

As for Chris, he sticks with a Monster energy drink and some cold pizza. After that, "good breakfast" he seems to perk up a little. However, when he arrives at the polling place he is faced with an hour wait. For the first 15 minutes, Chris, a young student, seems almost excited. He talks about the party the night before, "That shit was awesome. Oh man, I totally dodged a bullet this morning. I am actually feeling prettyyyy, preettyyy, preeeettyyyy good."

This is a reference to 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' he seems to make a lot. When at first I don't immediately show signs of getting the reference, he asks me if I watch the show. When I tell him that I had indeed seen the show he begins asking me if I remember specific episodes, such as "the one where Larry gets a pube' stuck in his throat after going down on Cheryl."

When I try to ask him about some of the issues that he finds important he mumbles something about "injustice", mentions the word "regime" several times in concert with the word "establishment" and finally concludes with, "Sarah Palin is hot, though."

At this point, Chris appears as though he might be ill. The conversation falls silent and a few minutes later he is obviously trying to suppresses heaves. When the heaves stop, Chris begins talking about how he doesn't know, "...why they have to have these damn tests so early in the morning."

At this point, I am beginning to get the impression that Chris is very confused and when Chris finally gets his ballot and he turns and looks at me and says, "Wish me luck," my suspicions are confirmed.

Forty minutes later, Chris emerges from the voting booth. When I ask how he feels about the whole process he says that he thinks he did a pretty good job, but that he had trouble filling in the bubbles with a No. 2 pencil "without going outside the lines", that he was sort of distracted by the "hot Asian" girl voting in the booth next to his, but that he was glad that there was no essay portion. All in all, he expects to score at least a 22.

*all the characters in this article are completely fictional--mostly. i apologize for the fact that this story is completely moot now that Obama won. i would have published it on election day, but i didn't come up with the idea until after i voted this afternoon. btw, i am stoked obama is the president elect. America deserves more credit than i give it.