Mad Cow Disease and Blood Donations

As the whole world knows by now, they've found a case of mad cow disease in the USA. Reported, but under-stated, is the fact that the meat processers tested the animal that arrived half-parylized, but had no hesitation in sending it right into the slaugherhouse and into our food supply. And indeed the law requires nothing else.

I spent several years living in a country — England — which woke up gradually to the fact that it had a serioius Mad Cow disease problem. [Best newspaper cartoon. One cow says to the other, “So, what do you think about this Mad Cow disease?” Second cow replies, “Doesn't bother us ducks.”] When I got back to the US I found tha the Red Cross wouldn't take my blood in blood drives, because I'd lived (oddly the rule didn't apply to mere tourists) in a country where there were reported cases of Mad Cow disease. I presume that this rule will now be relaxed for domestic blood donations at least?

If we continue the path of recapitulating the not-very-admirable British experience (denial that there's a big problem, no change in regulations, followed by a growth in the problem), expect a bunch of jokes about which of our politicians are infected. Probably Karl Rove is working them up already….

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One Response to Mad Cow Disease and Blood Donations

  1. Anthony says:

    Meat is safe? That’s a good joke! Meat promotes health? That’s an advertisement from industry. If you think meat is safe, consider the following:

    What animal products do to people:
    Heart attacks
    High blood pressure
    High cholesterol
    Mad Cow (BSE)
    Acid Reflux
    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
    Graves Disease
    Dementia and other mental problems
    Emotional problems
    Increase costs related to medical care
    Increase taxes to aid poor people who come down with medical problems

    What animal products do to the environment:
    Use up massive supplies of fresh water. (ex. 5000 gallons to make one pound of beef). Lake Ogallala, an underground reservoir larger than Huron that took millions of years to form shall be dry in 2 to 3 generations in order to irrigate crops to feed to live stock.
    Use up massive amounts of land to grow grain. (80% of the grain grown is fed to livestock)
    Manure pollutes the land and the water with nitrates and pesticides with other poisons. (livestock in the US outweighs people by 5 to 1)
    Pollution from nitrates kills off other wildlife that keeps the Earth in balance.
    Clear cutting of rainforests in order to graze cattle.
    Stripping away of top soil so that neither grains nor trees can grow in some areas.
    Using up energy including fossil fuels in order to transport and refrigerate animal products.

    Neither list is by any means complete!

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