Saturday, October 24, 2020

Chicken trivia

 we used to farm broiler chickens, until a typhoon flattened the chicken houses and we decided the profit we made wasn't enough to rebuild (our local chicken prices were low thanks to imports from Viet Nam... globalization anyone?)

Well, anyway, the story of how chickens took over the world as a cheap protein source is fascinating:

So where did the chicken originate? From the forest chicken of South East Asia. or maybe China or maybe India. aka the red junglefowl.

And the original chickens might have been caught to use for cockfighting: something I sort of believe, because cockfighting is a big sport here in the Philippines, where you frequently see fighting cocks outside under a small shelter in people's back yards.

However, along the way, the species was bred to become nicer (although they are still aggressive: You ever heard the Phrase "Pecking order"?) Chickens killing other chickens in a herd is alas a problem, which is why more sophisticated henhouses put hens inside a box to lay eggs and the broiler chickens bred for meat production tend to be a white chicken bred for fast growth and lack of aggression.

The fighting rooster is revered as a symbol of courage, and watchfulnees/ protection here in Asia. Remember how the critics laughed at the "Trump Chicken" meme? Well, it had the opposite connotation here in Asia, especially since the meme was not a Chicken but a fire rooster of the Chinese zodiac.

A charismatic man has a stunning energy, is always in the spotlight. Leader, unquestioned authority, charming handsome - all this Fire Rooster.

There are a lot of species of chickens out there but as I noted, most of the cheaper farmed chickens are of one species.

One worry about the chicken is that this monoculture could lead to it's demise from disease: so scientists are doing lots of DNA studies to identify the chicken origin and maybe to steal some of their genes to improve disease resistance.

The problem? Chickens cross breed, so in many areas, thanks to free range chickens in villages, there are few pure bred red junglefowl out there.

which brings me to the Chicken trivia of the day.

Curiously, one of the few remaining populations of pure red junglefowl, as reported in Audubon, is found in Georgia. About 900 junglefowl roam the streets of the town of Fitzgerald....In the 1960s, wildlife managers released the junglefowl as part of an effort to establish populations of non-native gamebirds for hunting purposes.The junglefowl never established in wild habitats, but they did colonize the Fitzgerald’s parks and backyards, where many local residents consider them a nuisance.


in a somewhat related item: 

Before there was Green acres, there was the Egg and I: about a city gal whose husband fell in love with country living.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Secret churches

 Virtueonline links to an article about the newest version of Christianity in China that has revived the house churches in rural areas: Calvinism originating in Indonesia. As the rural Pentecostal house churches lose the educated young because they are migrating to cities, they want a more substantial church i.e. more emphasis on intellectual basis instead of mere emotion.

I wonder if it is because the rule oriented Calvinism has rules of conduct similar to Confucian ethics, but then I don't know enough about the subject to know if this is true.

the article also notes the persecution of Christians and the destruction of churches in China.


I don't know if anyone outside the religious right notices the problem of closing churches. No, worshipping on line or watching TV is not the same.

Yes, virus. But when the public health authorities said hey, BLM demostrations were fine, one does wonder why pastors in the USA didn't say: well if they can gather outside during the day to demonstrate, well, we can imitate them by having worship services outside.

Here, a couple months ago I posted about a priest in Manila saying mass on the back of a pickup truck in the poor areas of Manila.

and our churches have reopened, although elders are not allowed inside (we have to stand outside and keep our distance). Which means as soon as the hot season stops I might actually try to go back to church.

And in Africa, sometimes the priest would say mass under a tree in isolated villages.

So anyway, Father Z links to an article about the Irish sneaking out to pray at the mass rocks, where the Irish gathered to pray and have mass said during that country's persecution.

Alas,. Ireland's bishops pretty well destroyed their church over the last 30 years, so this seems to be mainly a lay effort.

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

here comes the storm

Actually not quite a typhoon but a tropical storm. We are signal 2.
The eye should pass us by tonite.

Heavy rain all day.
The harvested rice is dry, which is good news,..the bad news is that we have more rice to harvest...if the wind is high, the rest of the crop could be ruined.

update: aside from broken banana and palm tree fronds we seem to be okay. Kuya will check the farm later today for damage to the crops

Monday, October 19, 2020

Stories not covered in the media:

 Michael Yon, whose reports on Hong Kong told the inside story of their protests, has now gone to report the antifa "peaceful protests" aka riots.

This dispatch points to one of the biggest problems no one seems to be reporting on: That the homeless problem is due to drugs. and it resembles the revenge of China for the Opium wars.

and during the pandemic, overdoses and suicides (which often are in those who have abuse problems) have skyrocketed.

Of course, if someone tries to do something about it, like Duterte is trying to do here, the "human rights" types will protest, because the lives destroyed by drugs and the people killed by druggies robbing them (as several older folks in our town were killed), well they don't care. 

I remember when things changed: Before the Beatles popularized drug taking, such things were not normalized in society. Then suddenly those of us who refused to go along with taking drugs were ridiculed and marginalized.

So yes, go mourn John Lennon. But remember: The guy who killed him scrambled his brains into psychotic delusions due to drug taking. In the east, this is known as Karma...

and the question no one is asking: Where the H### are the churches on this issue? Afraid to preach against drug taking because they might lose their congregations?


Joe Biden is being brought low by his kids. But hey, Twitter and Facebook etc. are trying to censor that story.

But the question no one is asking:

A lot of this is "legal" since giving money to a son/spouse/family member for political influence is not considered bribery. Ditto for family members who get lucrative business deals. But there are a lot of politicians in Washington who have become rich and no one wants to talk about it.

Which is why the well known shenanigans of Trumpieboy before he became president are shrugged off by the deplorables: 

As my husband would say: They're all crooks. 

and we know lots about Trumpieboy's business deals, (lots of "best sellers" full of these claims are out there) but not how other politicians became millionaires while serving in congress.

So where are the reporters in all of this? Well, given the death of Daphne Caruana, and the lack of interest in things like the Panama papers etc., you can see why these things are not covered very well in the press.


I ran across this photo on Powerline blog.

what hit me was not the contrast between the photos, but that there are crowds at airports where Trumpieboy has landed. LINK LINK2 LINK3 LINK4

apparently he is making a lot of stops at small airports to campaign, and by calling these gathering "peaceful protests" he can point out that Antifa, feminists, BLM etc. protests are going on all the time without much outcry about the virus spread, implying that if you condemn one gathering you have to do the same for the other side.

This bring in mind another President hated by the establishment who did the same thing: Give'm hell Harry's whistle stop campaign, where Truman crossed the country on a train and gave speeches.

Whistle-Stop Campaign July - October 1948

THE TRAIN CAMPAIGN PROVED TO BE AN UNEXPECTED SUCCESS. During the tour, a new relaxed and confident Harry Truman was presented to the people — a candidate who spoke their language and understood their needs...
For his part, Truman relentlessly accused the "do-nothing" Republican Congress of failing to meet the needs of the American people, a tirade that served him well with the common voter.
" Give 'em hell, Harry " became a battle-cry for the hard-fought, uphill battle of the campaign.

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Russia steps into the breech

While the US vaccine is being held up by TDS/politics, since any attempt to release it early will be opposed by Trump's opposition by calling such a move risky and based on politics, not science. Just ignore the cost/benefit ratio means that a lot more people will die in the name of "safety" by those insising there be no rare side effects.

hopefully, the vaccine will be released a day or two after the election if Biden wins (who knows when it will be released if Trumpiboy wins, since the establishment is busy trying to blame him for trying to rush the vaccine development)

But the dirty little secret is that the Philippines, and other less affluent countries need a vaccine to reopen the economy if there won't be massive starvation and economic collapse in poorer countries.

Duterte wants everyone here in the Philippines to get the Covid vaccine, both to save people's lives and to reopen the economy. And guess who is offering to provide it? Russia.......


Russia is even offering to open a pharmacology factory here to make the vaccine. 


as I have written in earlier posts, a lot of the anti vax propaganda is Russian disinformation against vaccines, something that dates back at least two decades, as propaganda to make countries afraid of aid from western countries.
so far, people prefer Russian vaccine to the Chinese vaccine. 

and of course, if the US State Dept would get off their puwit and offer Duterte a deal, he'd take them up on it, even though he hates and distrusts the US SD and the CIA, because most docs here prefer the better tested US vaccine.

Bernie got robbed

Lots of chaff out there about Biden's son's corruption...back in the news because a hard drive information was leaked to the press.
And more scandal because twitter is trying to censor the story.

But one of the facts leaking out is not the corruption per ee, but that the computer repair shop gave the hard drives to the FBI last December...meaning they were hiding evidence that would have made the charges behind Trump's impeachment nonsense.

But it has another implication.

If Biden had been tainted with credible/ provable evidence of corruption during the primaries, then Bernie would have won the nomination.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Family news

 Kuya is at the farm trying to get the rice harvest in: there have been low pressure areas and rain, meaning it is hard to cut and dry it before it starts to rain in the afternoon.

The cook's latest great grandchildren, a set of twins, just celebrated their first birthday, so we got given Filipino style spaghetti to eat from the party. (sweet tomato sauce, and hot dogs and processed cheese on top).

Like a lot of twins, one was smaller and hospitalized twice for diarrhea/ fever/ failure to thrive. Mom's milk didn't agree with her (probably the real problem was not enough mom's milk for two kids, and the stronger one sucked her dry)...The doctor finally found an organic formula that worked, and since then she has done well. The problem? It's expensive, (a week's worth of forumla is 800 pesos, but mom and grandmom are out of work due to the virus) so I've been paying for the milk, and since then she has done okay and now is almost as big as her sister.


The maid just asked for extra money so her son could buy a smart phone for classes. She has one, but he has been sharing it with her and cousins so has been doing most of his classes with paper modules, which is stressful.

The maid brought up the suicide of a high school student in Manila, who fell behind and was reprimanded for this, so came home and his mom found him dead in his bedroom. This story is all over the papers and social media because adjusting to the new version of school is causing a lot of stress for middle class and lower middle class families who see education as the way out of poverty.

For example, The cook's youngest son went to college thanks to a scholarship from Japan and help from Lolo...but several of her grandkids are attendind post high school education too, with help from extended family.

In the meanwhile, the BBC ignores all of this and has a report of a " political prisoner" jailed for hiding weapons who had a baby in prison, but the authorities sent the kid home so it died after 3 months with diarrhea and pneumonia...and of course is blaming Duterte. The article claims everyone here is upset, but I didnt read about it. My take, as a doc who saw these problems in Africa?

Grandmom fed her formula mixed with dirty water, and maybe even watered down the formula because she couldn't afford to buy it.... or maybe the diarrhea came from dirty bottles. Alas, these deaths from babies on formula is why they encourage only breast feeding here, and most moms do breast feed. 

. In other words,and maybe if all the horrified SJW had helped out with paying for bottled water and a good formula the kid would have lived.  And maybe even help the kids of other women who cant breatfeed, live too...Ah, but demonstrating is so ego gratifying, and actual hands on helping people cope means getting your hands dirty.

Monday, October 12, 2020

on line learning

 I am behind in my LOTR podcast listening, but today's podcast of Morgoth's Ring started with Prof. Olsen, who a couple years ago established an on line College (Signum University), is discussing inequality of employees in universities, and how he is trying to make all employees on the same team.

he says earlier podcasts started with his discussion of marginalizing faculty by the administration?

Nope. Not my area of expertise. But if you are involved in higher education you might want to check out stuff on their site.

I only bring this up because my granddaughter in the USA is busy attending on line classes, with only a few regular classes at her college.

Will all on line classes be the way of the future?

probably not: Because a lot of learning is with questioning the teacher and with students discussing their subject with other students.

On the other hand, when I was in Medical school (nearly 50 years ago!), we tended to be busy, so one enterprising student started a class notes service: He would tape the lecture then have it typed out and duplicated for those who didn't want to attend classes.

So our Medical school yearbook had a photo labeled: A typical class: Showing an empty classroom with the lonely student with his large tape recorder being the only one in the class room.

Yup. the more things change the more they stay the same.

Again not my area of expertise: I am not a memorizer but learn by concepts and mind pictures. So I prefer to listen and take pithy notes of what I heard, which required me to translate the words into the concept.

On the other hand, my youngest did well with homeschool type modules that were used in his school: He knew that if he didn't master the module, he'd have to repeat it, so he actually paid attention to what he was working at. In regular classes, he'd get bored and start daydreaming and not learn anything at all.

The reason I bring this up:

here, students are taking many of their classes on line with the help of their parents: our mayor has established a cheap internet wifi program, and our internet has been going on and off as they update the data connections with fiberoptic cables. There are also non internet ways to teach, using printed modules of the lessons. Sort of like what my son did in homeschool: You follow the module with your parents' help, and then email the teacher to get help...

here are some local videos about the new way of learning here in the Philippines, which is still in partial lockdown.


I should add that polls show Duterte's approval rating remains high: 90 percent approve of his handling of Covid and 80 percent approve of what he is doing to run the government.

But you can see the need is to reopen the cities, and this won't happen without a vaccine. 

The WHO just decided to stop advising shutdown/quarantines
because of the economic problems it is causing in much of the world