August 25, 2019

Canadian Climate Change Arctic Expedition Derailed Due to Heavy Ice

So sad. A Canadian arctic research expedition to study “climate change” (always meaning global warming) has been derailed. Why? Heavy ice. However, readers of the CBC News account of the story are left in the dark as to the exact nature of the expedition that is not to be this year. Fortunately, a quick search has turned up a Daily Kos Kossack who is a member of that attempted expedition who was happily chirping out what it is all about last Thursday. Here is the CBC report that tells what happened to the Canadian Coast guard cutter without telling us what the expedition was about:

Source: Canadian Climate Change Arctic Expedition Derailed Due to Heavy Ice

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I Ate My Dog For Homework

Two things in play in our society today and one of them dominates all others. The second issue is that our society struggles to laugh at themselves and find humor in things where humor is intended to be found. The first and most dominant point of departure is hypocrisy.

Hypocrisy reveals myriad things in a society, one of which is the manifestation of people’s incompetency to make legitimate judgements about much of anything worthwhile. Hypocrisy is dishonesty and when we exemplify that we are also showing the world our anger and hatred, all of which drives our bias.

A current example playing out in this nation is the joke telling dealing with the topic of President Barack Obama’s revelation that when he was a kid growing up in Indonesia he ate dog. Do rational people care about this beyond the obvious, that either the president’s family was poor and that’s all they could afford or eating dog was acceptable table fare?

Even though I think we as a people are losing our ability to laugh, I still believe that existing in a society that considers laughing healthy, we have always had a strong yen for humor. Once, every comedian and late night talk show host made gobs of money telling jokes about presidents. We all laughed no matter who was in the White House. Of course some presidents became better targets of the quipsters, mostly dependent upon what they did or said. I even recall impersonators like Rich Little, who struggled to impersonate some presidents and then got plenty of mileage from others, sometimes by just the simple way they looked or the tone and quality of their voice. Think of the actor John Wayne, who had a distinct walk and a voice to go with it.

Today, people too often tend to limit their laughter based on political bias. This is where the hypocrisy comes into play. A joke about George Bush may make some laugh and others not, taking offense that they are being made fun of or that somehow it’s not fair. If the same comedian told a joke about Barack Obama, the roles become reversed. Don’t misunderstand me here. This hypocrisy swings in all directions and the worst kind is that coming from those who refuse to recognize it for what it is.

Let’s also be honest, if that’s possible anymore. Barack Obama is half black and half white. We have struggled as a society to get beyond racism and bigotry and as such, I’m positive in my assessment that a lot of restraint has been shown in targeting Barack Obama for jokes out of fear of just what has happened; accusations of racism.

President Obama ate dog as a child. What’s wrong with that? I’ve written about eating dog in our history and that eating dog is still the cuisine of some societies. When President Jefferson sent Captains Lewis and Clark to find a passage to the Pacific Ocean, neither of the men or their expedition would have survived had they not eaten dog. But as humans, we are prone to make jokes about it, I think some because we are uncomfortable with talking about the subject, but mostly because humor defines us.

On the website The People’s Cube, an entire array of photoshopped pictures depicting President Obama eating or chasing after dogs with the intent of eating them, can be found.

On John McCain’s Twitter page he posted a photo of his son’s bull dog and ends his Tweet by saying, “I’m sorry Mr. President, he’s not on the menu!”

When asked at a press conference, White House Press Secretary, Jay Carney, struggled to answer the question as to whether the President was aware of all the jokes but he couldn’t resist making a joke about the jokes.

If you click on the link to John McCain’s Twitter page, you can read some of the comments irate people left to John McCain about his sick sense of humor.

But what about the hypocrisy? Recall, if you will, that not long ago, there were a lot of people very upset about the movie “The Grey”. Two issues played out here. The movie was about a plane that crashed in the middle of nowhere in Alaska. Survival was key, i.e. finding food and prevent becoming food. The plot is about these survivors fending off a hungry pack of wolves. The first issue of outrage was that the makers of the movie dared depict wolves in a truth setting; that they are bloodthirsty killers. The second issue is that the wolves they killed, they ate.

Hang on for a second. This is a movie! But yet there was still outrage. In addition, before filming of the movie began, the cast and staff tried eating some wolf meat in order to gain a better understanding of what they were up against. Doing so has “dogged” them ever since. (See what I mean?)

The point is there was outrage over this and I recall reading in several places among the media outlets, including Online, that people just did not eat dog. That our society (American) has never eaten dog, etc. etc. etc. This is what prompted me to dig back through the Lewis and Clark Expedition journals to recount all the times they not only ate dog meat buy preferred it over deer or elk. In addition this dog meat they ate, included domestic dogs they bought from the natives and coyotes and wolves they were able to kill during their journey.

The hypocrisy here is that while there was outrage that dogs were depicted as being eaten in a movie, there was no outrage at the disclosure that President Obama actually did eat dog as a kid. Instead, their biased anger is directed at those who chose to make jokes about it, seemingly now supporting the eating of dog….well, depending upon who did the eating I guess.

One can argue that most of these jokes originated from people or organizations that are working to elect a different president, but why is this all of a sudden different or deserve a different level of scrutiny? Campaigns bring out the worst in everybody.

What the reasons are that President Obama ate dog as a kid, I don’t know, nor do I care. I think some of the jokes are funny. I find some a bit over the top. I certainly can understand a person who adores dogs, finding offense in some of these photos and jokes. And I find the same level of humor disseminated the same way regardless of which side of the political aisle they walk on.

Tom Remington

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Lewis and Clark – No Game, Lots of Game and Lots of Wolves

I’m winding down my rereading from the Journals of Captains Lewis and Clark. Lewis and Clark separated into two expeditions at Traveler’s Rest during the return trip. Lewis takes the northern route, mostly retracing the route out, with some detours, while Clark swung south, eventually connecting up with the Yellowstone River (the River Rochejhone as Clark calls it in his journal), until they rejoined expeditions on the Missouri River someplace not too far south of the confluence of the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers.

What is clear in reading the journals is that for the most part the Lewis and Clark expedition struggled to find any game to eat from perhaps what is now Great Falls, Montana all the way to the West Coast. The men lived mostly on dried and mashed roots the Indians taught them about and dogs they traded with the natives for. Sometimes finding anything to eat was a real struggle.

On the return trip home, the further east and south the travelers went, the more game, i.e. buffalo, elk and deer, they found. At times, the buffalo would be so numerous while crossing the Missouri River, Captain Lewis and his men had to wait in their canoes in order to pass.

But what also is apparent is that when there was ample game, there were ample wolves and when there was no game, there were no wolves.

After Lewis and Clark rejoined forces south of the confluence of Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers, Clark writes in his journal that one night when the soldiers where sleeping, one man who had fallen asleep, had left his hand exposed. During the night a wolf came by and took a chomp out of it.

From the journals one can easily see that things weren’t “pristine” in a lot of places.

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From the Journals of Lewis and Clark: The Struggle for Food

As I continue my reread of the adventures of Lewis and Clark, often times the reading is dry with weather reports and what they saw on the right and saw on the left and how many miles they covered. At times however, both Lewis and Clark write in relative depth about certain issues and observations.

Included in the expedition that was sanctioned by President Jefferson and headed by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were what was then considered “professional hunters”. I have no idea what qualifications these men possessed that earned them the distinction of professional hunters, but nonetheless throughout the entire journey they were on a daily basis dispatched by Lewis and Clark to hunt and gather food. Sometimes this involved having the hunters go ahead of the expedition and cache food along the riverbanks and/or trails for the troops.

Finding food was not always an easy chore. As a matter of fact, the expedition was forced many times to kill and eat horses they had bought from the Indians. Through many days travel from the Continental Divide and down through the Columbia River, Lewis and Clarke bought dogs from the Indians to feed their troops. During their first winter camping alongside the Missouri River, the expedition may have starved to death had it not been for the modest supplies of dried foods the natives had that Lewis and Clark were able to trade for.

In my reading at present, Lewis and Clark are camped for the winter near the mouth of the Columbia River where it flows into the Pacific Ocean. It rains and storms nearly everyday. Conditions are miserable, to say the least. Troops work everyday in the lousy weather building shelters, smoke house, supply storage and fort walls. Because of the conditions and hard work, the troops are suffering injuries and illness. Generally speaking conditions are not great and to add to it, the availability of fresh meat is just not reliable.

Several Indian tribes take up their winter residence in the same area. These natives eat a different diet than do the white men involved in the expedition. The natives mostly subsist on fish, roots and berries, Lewis and Clark are forced to buy a lot of this food from the Indians because there is not a lot of easily found meat, i.e. elk, deer, etc. nearby. They also struggle in keeping their meat from spoiling even though at this point they have constructed a smoke house used to cure meat.

Needless to say, the adventurers have learned to eat many different things along their journey, including spoiled meat as well as fresh meat from just about every wild critter they could kill.

During the time that Lewis and Clark spent on the coast of what is now Washington and Oregon, both Lewis and Clark wrote in their journals comments about eating certain meats that today in our society would be unheard of.

Written January 3, 1806 by Clark in the Journals of Lewis and Clark:

“Our party from necessity have been obliged to subsist some length of time on dogs, have now become extremely fond of their flesh; it is worthy of remark that while we lived principally on the flesh of this animal we were much more healthy, strong and more fleshy than we have been since we left the buffalo country. As for my own part, I have not become reconciled to the taste of this animal as yet.”

At the time this was written, I’m half guessing that perhaps William Clark was waxing a little nostalgic, hungry and missing those moments when fresh elk and deer meat were readily available for sustenance. The expedition’s hunters were able to locate and kill some elk, at times great distances from the newly built fort, there was never enough of this meat to feed the troops on a regular basis. Because of the great distances away where the elk were shot and killed, by the time the hunters, with help from the troops, retrieved the meat and brought it to the fort, it was spoiled or beginning to spoil. Smoking the meat didn’t take away the spoil.

At this time, both Lewis and Clark had expressed dissatisfaction with being forced to eat the dried fish the natives had and that which the expedition had to purchase or barter to get because of the lack of fresh meat. Also it was noted a few times that Lewis and Clark could not sustain trading away all of their supplies in order to subsist.

In short, I’m not sure that Lewis and Clark fully anticipated having the struggles they did to eat well on a consistent basis.

It was only two days later that we find where Capt. Lewis makes comment about what he eats. To set the stage for these comments, Meriwether Lewis had ordered some of his men to take canoes and travel to the beaches of the ocean and find a likely place in which they could set up and make salt. This place ended up being several miles from the fort.

After about 6 days had passed since the salt making party were to have returned to the fort, Clark and others went looking for them. In the meantime, the salt party returned to the fort temporarily and brought with them about a quart or so of fine quality salt they had been successful in making.

In the context of the below comments by Capt. Lewis, he is writing about how some of the men were excited to have salt to dress up, if you will, their meat and meals. Lewis makes note that he really could care little about whether he had salt and makes the following comments.

Capt Lewis, January 5, 1806, from the Journals of Lewis and Clark:

“The want of bread I consider as trivial provided I get fat meat, far as to the species of meat I am not very particular. The flesh of the dog, the horse and the wolf, having from habit become equally familiar with any other, and I have learned to think that if the chord be sufficiently strong, which binds the soul and body together, it does not so much matter about the materials which compose it.”

Part of the motivation to write this piece comes from comments that have been made by some animal rights groups about the recently released movie, The Grey. The movie is about people that survive a plane crash in the snow climes of the north country, smack dab in the middle of packs of wolves.

I’ve not seen the movie but evidently at some point for survival, some of the wolves that have been killed as the result of attacks by the wolves on the survivors, are eaten by the people. The comments from animal rights groups and other ignoramuses, are that nobody can eat a dog and there is nothing nutritious in them.

This of course is quite the contrary. Not only in our own history books, as I have shown above, and world history has the eating of dogs been a regular occurrence, in some societies today, the habit still happens.

Tom Remington

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Random Thoughts/Comments: Lewis & Clark, Dog Wagging, Pond Scum, Unemployment, Global Cooling

I was rereading through the journals and history of the Lewis and Clark Expeditions. When Lewis and Clark had essentially traveled upstream of the Missouri River to a point they could no longer go by boats, they had yet to meet up with the Shoshoni Indians. While the bulk of the expedition troop camped at “the forks”, I believe it was Lewis, with a small contingency of men, set out to meet up with the natives.

Of course they did find them and an interesting part I was reading was about how the Shoshonis devoured meat from deer and elk that the hunters of the L&C expedition provided for them. They devoured most everything in rapid fashion, including entrails, and didn’t bother to take the time to cook it. Yum!

What I discovered as I read on was that where the Shoshonis had decided to spend their summers was buried deep in the mountains in areas where there was little to eat, i.e. deer, elk, moose or any kind of wild animal to speak of. They mostly tried to subsist on fish and salmon from streams that were mostly part of the Columbia River watershed – obviously they had crossed the Continental Divide by this time.

Essentially, when Lewis and Clark found them, while not starving to death, they certainly were far from being well nourished. But there was a reason they hid out in the mountains. They feared the Minnetaree Indians. They had warred with them over the years and suffered greatly as a tribe. It was only during winter when the Shoshonis moved down out of the mountains nearer where the buffalo roamed.

The Lewis and Clark Expedition spent a fair amount of time around where the Shoshonis hung out and day after day, L&C sent their hunters out for food and came back empty handed. At times they had to dig into their “emergency” supplies of dried foods. They finally had to move out of this area and at the same time send the hunters far away from camp to find food. Interesting. Later events recall serious issues with finding food.

One has to wonder if perhaps there is a bit of tail wagging the dog going on in the world or at least a lot of posturing that has people in a stir. My brother readily uses the analogy of “watching the hand”. He illustrates by overtly waving one of his hands in my face while hiding the other behind his back. The intent is to get you to pay attention to the waving hand in front of your face while the other hand does something deceptive that he doesn’t want you to know about.

Well, there’s an awful lot of hand waving with attempts at getting people to have a look at all the commotion, but what is really going on? Is this clamor a diversion away from events at home while in the middle of a republican presidential primary? Or perhaps it’s deflecting attention toward Iran and Israel in order to be drawn away from some other sinister event.

Everything happens for a reason and the other day when Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced troop withdrawal from Afghanistan one year early, there had to be a reason other than “gee I thought it would be cool”.

Today, the chatter is about Israel may attack Iran in the spring. Some reports seem to not be discussing if but when.

Keep an eye on the hand but don’t take your eye off the other hand either. Something is working out of our sight.

Professional sports has sunk to such a disgusting level that even so-called sports reporters can find nothing more to talk about for the upcoming Super Bowl than to call Tom Brady childish names while picking on his wife and revealing an email she sent to close friends and family. What a slime ball this reporter is. And I think Mrs. Brady better reexamine here “close” friends and “family” and see who was dumb enough to share the email.

I forget who the genius political pundit was who warned us all that leading up to the election the Obama Administration would play games with the unemployment rate so things wouldn’t look so bad. While it is a good thing that supposedly 243,000 people got jobs last month, it’s not a good thing that over 2 million people have just disappeared off the jobless radar – they’ve either given up trying to find a job, or perhaps went to work on their own, etc. Regardless, they are off the unemployment rolls and therefore no longer counted. At this rate by November unemployment numbers should be down to 7% and still the same millions of Americans not working.

Now that only a handful of brainwashed global warming cultist still cling to the lies that the earth is warming, I was hopeful. I was actually look forward to some global warming. Less severe winters, better crop production, lower heating costs, etc. However, now we are being told we are heading into a global cooling trend. I think it’s deja vu all over again.

Tom Remington

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