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Some Things Said… (February 07)

The lesson of Chicken Little is that all that’s required to start a panic is just one nut. A natural phenomenon boggles Little’s brain, her hysterical squawking scares her community into a rush for government action, and from an imaginary future threat they run smack into the jaws of a real present one.

The moral of the story depends on who you are. If you’re a Chicken Little or you know one, it’s don’t jump to conclusions, don’t panic, don’t believe everything you’re told, and don’t buy into mass hysteria.

If you’re a fox, the moral is toss a few nuts at the hysterical types and go put the kettle on. –excerpted from an article by Jon Sanders as found at 01.31.07

An additional inconvenient truth…

The inconvenient truth remains that climate is the most complex, coupled, nonlinear, chaotic system known. In such a system, both “doing something” (emitting human-induced gases) and “not doing something” (not emitting) at the margins are equally unpredictable. What climate will we produce? Will it be better? And, if we get there, won’t it, too, change?

This is the fatal flaw at the heart of the whole global-warming debacle. Climate change must be accepted as the norm, not as an exception, and it must be seen primarily as a political and economic issue, focusing on how best humanity can continue to adapt to constant change, hot, wet, cold or dry. The concept of achieving a “stable climate” is a dangerous oxymoron… –excerpted from an article by Philip Stott, professor emeritus of biogeography at the University of London, from The Wall Street Journal, 02.03.07.

An unintentionally hilarious obituary to an honest horse

Why should we feel so much grief at the loss of one horse? After all, this is a world in which horses are sacrificed again and again for the sport of humans. Barbaro was euthanized yesterday, eight months after he shattered his right hind leg at the start of the Preakness Stakes. After an injury like that, most racehorses would have been put down minutes later. But every race is a complex equation – a balance of economics, athleticism, equine grace and conscience. Conscience often comes in last, but not in this case. Barbaro’s owners gave that horse exactly what he had given them, which is everything. It was the very least they could do, and yet it seemed truly exceptional in a sport that is as often barbarous as it is beautiful.

Barbaro was exceptional because he won the Kentucky Derby and looked as if he might have a chance at the Triple Crown. But nearly everyone who met him also talked of the life he displayed, a vivid presence that was so much more visible to us because it happened to belong to a winner.

Humans are not especially good at noticing horses, but Barbaro was easy to notice. And if his life caused us to pay attention to the possibilities of all horses, his death should cause us to pay attention to the tragedy inherent in the end of so many horses. Barbaro’s death was tragic not because it was measured against the races he might have won or even against the effort to save his life. It was tragic because of what every horse is.

You would have to look a long, long time to find a dishonest or cruel horse. And the odds are that if you did find one, it was made cruel or dishonest by the company it kept with humans. It is no exaggeration to say that nearly every horse – Barbaro included – is pure of heart. Some are faster, some slower. Some wind up in the winner’s circle. But they should all evoke in us the generosity of conscience – a human quality, after all – that was expended in the effort to save this one horse. –seriously taken from the New York Times editorial page 01.30.07 and submitted by Mark Zaveson.

Lest we forget…

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so.

Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

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