Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Saying Goodbye With Gratitude, Mark

Saying Goodbye With Gratitude

Mark was one of the first people to ask me to come and clear the geo-pathic stress and history of his church. When I got there, I noticed a big sign saying ‘ATITUDE’ on the wall over his yoga mat. He seemed able to take a joke so I said I liked his reminder but had he noticed his spelling mistake? Without the curtain though, it actually read ‘GRATITUDE’  It was the first of many funny moments.

He was a yoga teacher who did not wait for me to build my upper body strength and insisted I get into a triangular support position with the door and do a handstand right there and then..if a handstand is what I wanted to do! The relaxed way he took my ankle so I didn’t do myself any serious damage, made me feel as light as a feather and maybe able to do it on my own…both of which feelings were misleading!

 At the subtle body yoga retreat!

Physical safety was a theme of our friendship though. When we went to Barbados, to visit the brilliant Liz Cunningham, another maker of dreams come true, I know for definite that I wouldn’t have jumped on those minibuses, randomly explored, drank and swam, let alone made it back to the apartment, or on to the meeting place for the sunset – that’s what you do in Barbados, you meet with friends every day, to watch the sunset – if I hadn’t had Mark as navigator and body guard. The latter is how he introduced himself when curious locals asked what we were doing there!

But he really wanted me to be free too and braver; even buying me a ticket to Poland and a hostel so I would go on a new adventure – off the Kilkenny, Kerry, Oxford triangle, which I had been on for a long time. He remained in text support right until I got there in one piece and made some friends in Krakow. I got to go to the Resistance museum. Everyone knows ‘resistance is futile’ but it occurred to me that Mark was the only person I knew who would have survived that resistance against the nazis. No one was allowed to tell anyone else that they were in it – not like now where we can express our views openly and support each other.

Such a generous friend, he was always piling unwanted shrubs and young trees into his van and bringing them down for my place. Sometimes, he’d even travel with a full barrow of wet cement slopping around after work, to carry on his project here.

At the dog shelter vigil on the parade

And I was not a crap friend to him either! He lived here on an exchange basis, so he could save money to pay up for and do up the church. He worked on whatever he felt like doing and thank God he had great vision, taste and energy because I usually like to decide what happens here. That was instead of paying rent, even though I was broke. 

An amazing 200 metre path, steps and amphitheatre Mark created through the woods

Then he moved in again, a few months or year later as he was arguing with everyone as usual and suddenly had nowhere to go, with beloved Dakota and she chased cats, so it was a big ask! I stuck up for him too, always maintaining that everyone needs at least one friend who doesn’t have to listen to both sides of the story. I was a faithful friend. 

And this came in handy when the wonderful Yulia came into his life, as she was worried about whether Mark was the real deal. She couldn’t know for certain as she hadn’t come to Ireland yet. He had stuck his heels in and was angry, announced to me that ‘if you give an inch, they’ll take a mile’ – that makes me smile even now. Anyway, he meant that if you reassure a woman even once, she will never stop asking! That was the only time I ever succeeded in persuading him of anything. I said it’s perfectly reasonable to put the person you love’s mind at rest. So she knows where she stands with you.  That is what I’m most grateful of, I think, that he found her and they got married and all.

Beautiful steps he made, long before the cabin was there

We were, collectively, good friends to other people too. Like a mutual friend was locked up for being delusional. I told Mark after about a week that when I dowsed and applied all my intuition and discernment, I got a ‘yes’ to everything the friend said as being true and everything had happened exactly as he described it – no delusion at all. Mark replied, “I think so too. Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not after you”. That has been my favourite saying ever since! Between us all, we got the guy out of dodge.

"Evening Drinks With Mark": The one painting of him, he let me do as I was just using his Facebook profile picture - when it was that gorgeous black lamb - to work from!!

Mark was nearly always bristling with reflections on his past or the state of the world today, for people, animals and the environment. It was hard not to take him personally. Today, I realized it’s a miracle we were got on as long as we did! But I’m so grateful to have known someone so emotional yet stoic, so reactive and yet so deep.  He always said his brother Ross was the first of the family to wake up and led the way on all progressive ideas and values. 

I only saw him a handful of times in the last few years. Thankfully, that was mostly because he was living in Ukraine, on the wings of love. But I am grateful to have been spared seeing him in pain this last year. 

Planting the water garden with lovely plants donated by his Mum

Not seeing him came about as part of the biggest and hardest lesson he taught me, which was to mind my own business! This wasn’t a subtle lesson where I sensed that they’d rather do things their own way. It was literally me being me - I have always been around and helped people who are sick and sometimes dying. I honestly used to think the energy work I do was my job on the planet. I also happen to believe every heart beat is important so I had a multitude of what seemed essential and healing things to do to get well...and?  Mark eventually telling me to feck off! Rightly so, probably and I think he’ll be glad to observe, from the other side, that I’ve reined in my energy, in many friendships actually, and am saving it to fight the good fight.

I have confirmed with him telepathically today that I am determined to live until every animal is freed and there is no trace of carcinogenic farm sprays poisoning the food, air and water. It is the least we can do in his honour because it is so unfair he got poisoned on the quiet when he lived so mindfully and actively. Oh I know there are lots of reasons he got ill but he himself wanted the spraying and killing stopped, so let’s do that.

And then the biggest thank you of all must be for his providing the great sound track to so many evenings. Probably Kiss Off by The Violent Femmes was my first request and then always followed by a suggestion from him, Want to sing Karma Police. Everyone loves to sing Karma Police don’t they?  ‘For a minute there I lost myself, I lost myself’ I think he has paid his karmic debt in full this time and/or transmuted it, with so many beautiful creations like my meditation garden. I heard today, too late that he wanted people to share some pictures of his work and his legacy. Still, I’ll put them here. Still, after enjoying eternal life for a bit, he can come back on his own terms. I can’t wait, I’m sure we’ll all be there in some shape or form. Goodness knows, we must all be from the one soul group.

Rest in peace Fx

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Innovation For Rescuing Ill-fated Horses

Solution letter I sent to Kilkenny council's Environment Deprtment today. Better again, we have found a home for the lot and I wrote to tell them that too. I hope to God they let them be re-homed now and avoid slaughter.

There have been several senior and central people trying to contact your department about the horses you are seizing and are concerned for their welfare and future. 

I have come up with a solution for your consideration. My idea is to try a pilot project that gets the animals out of the middle of the situation between the travellers and the ACS - animal and carcass collection service. The ACS are presently the only heavy enough, violent enough and anonymous enough group to seize traveller horses as everyone else is too afraid. Instead, we can treat the travellers with respect and propose that the horses are going to be seized anyway, as they are neglected in terms of acceptable standards of care but they will be paid a nominal figure for them. 

At the moment the ACS are being paid the 950 per horse and that is incentivising the seizure of horses and their disposal as the policy is not to impound them but get rid of them. The travellers know this and it has led to extreme violence and it is not unjustified when they know the horses are just going to be shot. The travellers don't need to be told the exact amount the council pays per horse. 

A new approach would be where the owner gets €200 for their horse (God knows, every other animal abusing operation gets compensated when they have to shut down through non compliance) and the rest goes to the people who are rehoming, be they charity or individual, to help with their feed and care. 

This payment would be made only on condition that the travellers agree (and sign an agreement) that they are passing ownership and will not seek out any contact or intimidation or snatching of horses. If there is even a fear of this down the line, all the horses will be seized again and put down at once and criminal proceedings be brought against the original traveller community - the owners will be held responsible and this will motivate them to manage each other's behaviour. 

It is a revolutionary pilot scheme (although I say so myself) that takes the ACS out of the seat of power and the incentive to kill stray and traveller horses and includes the travellers in making a positive change, where their horse trade is recognised. If it works, the change can be attached to a training, feeding and care education which travellers will have to, in future, have participated in, to keep animals. It is like how we have to have a new license to tow horses safely in a trailer, even to a riding club event.  We can stipulate that it is a new policy to protect both the community, their business, the animals and improve road safety as so many are getting hit out on the ring road.  

This first 40 horses will count as a sort of amnesty and there's no commitment on the part of the council to pay for other or future neglected animals of course. What do you think?! 

If the travellers agree to relinquishing ownership of their horses, then we have several people and charities who can take a few each and would make far better use of the remainder of that payment, (€750) in rehoming and rehabilitating them. As your only other option at the moment is killing them, please do consider the suggestion. 

It could also have a longer beneficial impact as I have outlined, defusing the violence and fear between gardai, ACS, travellers and proper re-homers and rescue routes. Fairness could win out and even some integration and education.

Many thanks, I would be happy to help facilitate. Please let me know the timeline for meeting the travellers, the moving of the horses and what you would like me to do if anything.

Friday, January 17, 2020

Ballina Fine Gael councillors want Seal Cull and Deep Sea Port? Neither sound ecologically sound or Manifesto Material

Do you really want to go bludgeoning seals and seal cubs to death like they do in Canada – a blood bath? Unnecessary, cruel and not one person outside your Ballina councillors and whatever incentives they've been offered, who would say yes, go ahead. 

Do you really want to authorize a cull of seals as they have been identified as responsible for the shortage of salmon in the River Moy?! Without checking water quality and pollution from the CPAC, the whiskey distillery and the multitude of other polluters causing problems for wild life up and down the river and run off from agricultural chemicals and slurry?  I hope to God, you have poured over water reports for the whole area in question - that is the whole journey salmon cover - not just where they're not showing up for fishermen anymore? 

Do you really want to kill seals without looking at the marathon journey salmon make and the other obstacles they may have faced before even making their way back up the river? Especially, how far from the estuary were the European factory trawlers allowed to fish? They have been up and down the Irish shores catching 15,000 tonnes but only allowed to land 12,000 so  throwing back the smaller fish, already dead. The young salmon and all the other young fish are missing, presumed dead. There are dead zones with no fish all around our coast.

And what about Shell and the other sonic blasting to map the ocean floor for fossil fuels, that disorientates the sea life? Maybe the salmon can’t even find their old route back up the river any more.

We’ve nearly lost the Irish hare and now you want to wipe out the seals, when they’re tied in to our selki heritage. Go home tonight to your families and watch The Song of The Sea, a highly acclaimed Kilkenny film. Then ask your kids if they want you to authorize a killing of seals. 

What sort of people in this day and age of biodiversity loss and horrendous climate challenges, exploitation of land, sea, soil and animals at everyone’s expense really believe that the seals are to blame for the disappearance of fish in the river?  

If you don’t really believe it, I’m telling you, you don’t want that violence on your conscience. 

Would you begrudge the seals a few fish? Are the remaining fish ours rather than theirs? It is a question worth asking yourselves where you stand. Personally, I haven't eaten a fish in twenty years as I see how they suffer in their suffocation, out of water. 

Have you ever seen a seal cull? 

Even five years ago, a Kerry scallop festival had to import scallop from Donegal. This is not a natural predators problem. People, as usual, are destroying their habitat. 

Consider who does want them killed and why? 

And who do the council members think are going to do the shooting and get rid of the bodies? The ACS? The animal collection service?  The ACS aren’t even registered in Ireland, they are registered in Latvia where the biggest animal body parts factory is. So you give them the contract to kill (the slowest moving probably of all the coastal visitors) and then dispose of the bodies. And what will they do? Sell them back to us in fertilizer and other feed stuffs.

This is a grotesque proposition, completely against the public narrative and wishes which are for more protections for wildlife and nature rather than less. 

Have you not heard there’s an election coming up? Who are you thinking of inviting to the deep sea port? Chemical tankers? Those factory ships? We don't want industrial scale infrastructure in the sea, think conservation and nothing else. This is serious. It can only be serving a very select few voters who want the salmon themselves or someone wants to clear the bay before the seals themselves start dying and everyone realises you've let yet another stretch of coast go to the highest bidder/exploiter. I thought that catching salmon in rivers was illegal anyway. 

So, don’t do it! Think about the bigger picture for a minute. If there’s no salmon, there’s a situation unfolding that you as councillors need to look into. We are facing a global and national emergency and I ask you, on behalf of all the normal, sane, kind, human beings which is everyone apart from you and your advisors, to leave the poor God forsaken seals alone. 

Oh yes, and then you discover that Michelle Mulherin is a Fine Gael Senator, also from the Ballina constituency. These things must all be linked; party in power but hopefully not for long, new big money investment of 10 million for Killala Bay but first let's kill all the seals in Killala Bay. So bloody disturbing this politics and is no-one thinking about the future? About preserving life? Any of those old nice things that were once important?

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Realizing The Power of Green Politics

I just realized the Green Party has been waiting for this moment; a world-wide party of environmentalists planning a strategy, people who will know what to do when climate change becomes widely realized. In some counties and countries, even, the Green Party has been no bigger than a pressure group. But in Carlow and Kilkenny, what an amazing pressure group it has been. Malcolm Noonan who is our representative again and Mary White, who was Carlow Kilkenny's first elected female TD have been fighting battles for our environment and for inclusion for two decades, taking issues to Europe to make sure that Ireland wasn't overlooked and exploited too much for its clean food and clean water. 
I was at a talk nearly 10 years ago with Mary, Malcolm and Grace O'Sullivan - now MEP! all that needs to happen - like address transport (which Malcolm has now done, launching a brilliant local bus service last year) and all needs to not happen: Like, about how we needed to protect the farmers from the government's economic plans to double the national herd for export, by 2020, as it would doubtless conflict with carbon emission goals. It is now 2020 and the herd has doubled, milk and meat prices have sunk to an unsustainable low and small farmers and those who tried to expand are in debt and have no money to make even basic changes to better practice, using less chemicals. 
But now the farmers are protesting. The very same men who towed a main party's line all these years. They realize they've been shafted. Brilliantly as well, the extinction rebellion movement started, calling out politicians all over Europe for ignoring the glaring threat of the changing climate and loss of biodiversity. 
These are the hardcore, non political arm and it's just what is needed. In the past we were not at all hardcore. We retreated to the countryside and occasionally lodged complaints about this and that; blasting the ocean floor by Shell, resisting GMO seeds made by Monsanto, spraying chemical poisons on our food, building power stations and incinerators. We started to grow our own food and some only ate meat and eggs that came from their own small holding. Some of us bowed out of eating any animal ingredients at all. It ticked all the boxes for me; depriving the big industries of me as a customer (justice), sparing the animals (equality of all life) organic local food (saving the bees) peace of mind (better mental and physical health).
But suddenly here is the movement; the supporters and members we need. Here's the rebellion and the Young Greens relaying their message on, with equal determination. Parents are respecting their children, realizing the dreadful legacy of being wasteful and money-orientated. As government has allowed itself to be bought-off, we have too. For any bit of job or benefit - however unethical.
I've hung back for years, teaching empathy to anybody who comes my way. Radical responsibility combined with empathy for others and empathy for yourself are the only way to move forward, with friendship and kinship in your heart rather than that desperation that you might not have enough yourself - which is what we've been conditioned to think, to stop us sharing. To divide and conquer. We are a hospitable country, by nature and climate still. If you want that integrity and unity portrayed in government, its about voting Green no.1 Thank goodness we have the best of the best for the Carlow/Kilkenny area. There's hope for us yet! 

Every climate march, Malcolm Noonan's been there. Remember all those vigils to stop the dog shelter falling into the wrong hands? He was at every one. The demonstrations against sending greyhounds to China after their racing days in Ireland were done, he was there. Crack of dawn through to late at night, he stood up for the River Nore, drinking water and habitat to many for generations, and Medieval heritage when the council pushed for the central access scheme (CAS) bridge to go ahead. He always supported Vegetarian Kilkenny and was an attendee of the 'No meat and greet' evenings. Dammit, I miss those pot luck dinners!! 

He loves Nature and conservation but he also is deeply interested in day to day town-life. He's consistently been determined to bring back the heart to towns, with pedestrian areas and local bus services; supporting small interesting, creative, sustainable shops and bringing a wide knowledge and open mind to all the music and artists, playing at pubs and venues. Then there's the wilful destruction of the trees along rivers and pylons across mountains. He's brought awareness to all the things being done behind the scenes. To preserve all that is good about our climate, public services and our individual ability to sustain ourselves financially, creatively and with the central focus on working with the environment rather than ignoring the situation, we do need the Greens in government. None of the others are talking about it...or maybe they're talking about it but their decisions and votes on every matter demonstrate they don't care about Irish people, let alone foreign nationals, let alone farmers, let alone animals, let alone wildlife and let alone the climate.

Right To Protest in 2020?

It strikes me that, at the moment, every act of activism is a basic statement of something obvious: Nothing radical, nothing extreme and literally every member of the public and most politicians agree. Consider the climate marches and animal advocates showing up at exploitative venues.
In a year of an upcoming general election, these would be easy points for government. Not only should activists be protected from the law and the industries that use the law against them (as is happening now with the Greyhound Stadium) but the government could easily agree to stopping the 60 million public money to the greyhound industry and publicly divert it to a sustainable project with equally high emotive power for voters. Sure, if the government doesn't want to leave the various parts of the industry stranded, they can, instead, ban greyhound racing itself but invite Shelbourne Stadium and the other grant recipients to put in proposals for repurposing their buildings, lands, tracks. There must be one imaginative, problem-solving head at each facility - or they wouldn't be able to fill in the forms for that amount of public money. Just insist they come up with new plans that don't exploit the animals and do serve the environment. Everybody's happy.

I have since read that is exactly what is happening for four closing race tracks. Tracks closing and sanctuaries in their place

But not for the Shelbourne Stadium sadly...and the activists, the 'Greyhound 6' as they are coming to be known, who are bearing witness to the cruelty there. 

Update on their case:
It’s now January and as many of our supporters are aware, Shelbourne Park Greyhound Stadium have taken a High Court injunction against activists - ‘The Greyhound 6’. 

This injunction, which was granted on an ‘ex parte’ basis on 29th November 2019, includes a 50 metre “exclusion zone” at protests outside Shelbourne Park Greyhound Stadium indefinitely. 

The Greyhound 6 had their first court appearance 18th December 2019, but it reached no conclusion. They will all be returning to the High Court on the 28th January 2020 for what is set to be - at the very least - a 2 day hearing to defend their constitutional right to protest.

All 6 have wonderful legal representation, and are confident that justice will prevail. In the meantime, they are asking for your support for the campaign to ban greyhound racing in Ireland, and would also appreciate solidarity in court on the 28th January 2020.

We will post further information in due course. Please share this around and tag your friends. The Greyhound 6 will need support far and wide.

For the animals,
National Animal Rights Association

Climate Change and The Green Party

I'm getting excited about the Green Party. I am attending my first meeting on Tuesday in the Lord Bagenal if anyone else wants to come?! While Fiann Gael use delay tactics and topics like Property Tax (just like the Conservatives in the UK used Brexit) the rest of us are like wtf, what about our sustainability as a species? What's our plan to seize this chance to stop destroying, clean up and preserve our water, air, agriculture, food, health? How will we make sure the homeless get into houses. How will we make provision for the climate refugees that will need to come. Do you really think you should be bickering about wanting the right to fleece us for more property tax? Have they not noticed the white elephant in the room? And while we're on metaphors...could the Green Party be the Trojan Horse we need to get in to the halls of power and do what needs to be done to deal with the emergency.
This is what I think needs to be done.100 measures for a climate change adaptation strategy - all stake holders considered I know, I'm a jack of all trades but I'm not master of none! i may not be reliable at finding gold or even my own way around Dublin but the dowsing did bring me to a Climate Adaptation Strategy. Maybe plucked from universal consciousness but also founded in experience and addressing the majority of stake holders: Government, councils, companies, farmers and individuals. And it was delivered to my hand in exactly 100 actions we need to take. It's a 10,500 word document though so don't start it without a pot of tea and picnic ready!
I worked on this before but now I have distilled it into 3 fast moves...and that might be all we have time for! I'l have to write a new article with just those 3 sentences in them but first I had to get it all down!!

Attack on Cupid, 3rd 4th and 5th dimensional take on it!

31st December 2019

Happy New Year everyone! Well wishes and love for Cupid please...nearly had his head ripped off at his own gate. Been in surgery for the last two hours and his jugular vein is no longer exposed and regaining consciousness. What an ordeal but the people of Bagenalstown were sound as you like!

1st January 2020

Happy New Year's Day! Update on Cupid as he got us all worrying: He is still with us thank God!!! That attack made his blood run cold and so he is under 3 light blankets, motionless but breathing. The wound itself would make you gulp. He will only lick water off my fingers and not drink or eat anything from a bowl. Probably his swallow is horribly uncomfortable too. Pain and shock are factors in his existence at the moment but he has his own space. All beings tremble before violence, Gandhi said. When I asked how Cupid was, he started singing in very similar to Eddie's dulcet tones that resonate in every chakra: 

Previous paragraphs were about the third dimension

 For those interested in the energetic insights - 4D Karma/ Intuition, 5D unconditional love, 6D proportionality, gleaned from experience, poor little Cupid was the fall guy for 6 major ones. Bear in mind that from an energetic perspective, we create our own reality – what we think about comes about. From this perspective, we are all one and all connected. From here, dogs represent our emotional life, horses our spiritual life, cats our mental life and guinea pigs our sex life…and don’t worry…many people don’t have one!!!
1) Cupid, like myself, didn’t really believe that anyone would really have it in for him. But now we've both realised it's a dog eat dog world out there!!! Beware of and avoid the blood suckers is the essence of discernment in whatever shape or form they approach!
2) To keep joining in, in good faith with optimism and enthusiasm is tantamount to having an exposed jugular vein. Very vulnerable indeed! Because? Everyone knows what you care about and everyone thinks you’re naïve.
3) Oh yes, my big dog, Lucretius, who was also there at the attack…wagging his tail rapidly, nervously, still too self absorbed to realize that his main friend, in the whole world was in mortal danger. This is like friends and family in the past who are/appear to be at least, big enough to help but are too worried for themselves to get involved or think of protecting anyone else.
4) Life, in this day and age is structured to keep you busy, ricocheting from one priority to another: For me it was my brother, then the pigs in the hands of a convicted monster, then my own back giving way and isolation, then Lucretius – beloved golden boy who is very scarred (as well as starved) by abuse in his past. Now, though, I for one am determined to reconcile all aspects of life into one productive, not too intense flow. No more rushing to help one then another.
5) Finally, the fifth insight came this morning. I thought I’d better write an update…and I couldn’t get on line. DON’T FALL FOR IT!!!! They want you to be frustrated by 3 and 4 G today so they can roll out the 5G killer frequency and you might think it’s a good thing. Let’s all calm down, turn the phones off, read a book and cuddle a disturbed or injured or perfectly healthy and responsive companion!
6) Oh yes, how did I contribute to bringing this horrible experience on? I always keep myself clear, even after working with people and places that are in serious trouble with illness, violence and earth energies….BUT! I have ‘resonated’ with so many troubled and dark situations now (that people are shedding happily, as I clear them) that I have spent too much time and energy there. Also, with the animals rights problems. Too long thinking about badness – of which there is always more than enough – and that means I set someone up for something. Thankfully Cupid is through the worst and I was able to bring his soul back, that left and to see his eyes so dull was desperate to see.
Keep safe and happy, everyone, in 2020 and mind your thoughts too. Thing good ones, creative and epic ones only! Cupid now means to rise up and find his direction magnetically!


Francess K-d Hi Frances, I've just sent you a pm outlining concerns about how the following way of viewing life can lead to victim blaming in society. Nobody brings violence upon themselves....😥😿😥
Some sentences taken from your article:- 
""Bear in mind that from a
n energetic perspective, we create our own reality – what we think about comes about. Oh yes, how did I contribute to bringing this horrible experience on? I have ‘resonated’ with so many troubled and dark situations now that I have spent too much time and energy there. Mind your thoughts too. Think good ones.""

My understanding is diametrically opposed to blame, it is about personal responsibility. The only empowering way forwards as it means we can always look for our part in situations and only that way not recreate them. And, not be a victim of them.

Dee Sewell Am guessing yo was your neighbouring animals again? So sorry to hear about his attack again ðŸ˜ª hope he gets better soon x

Frances Micklem Thanks yes but they totally took it on this time which was good - in terms of paying for the operation, checking and mending their fence, checking in on Cupid. It really cheered Cupid up actually, the visit. He moved for the first time all day and came out to stand around. It was like he felt there was acknowledgement that his situation was being taken seriously and also - as you know - he's a die hard optimist and was determined to make friends and build bridges!!! Happy New Year to you and yours. I can't wait to see more of your landscape designs, they're such beautiful creations .... and I'll totally help when you start work on your garden design. My back is so much better. I could do at least 20 minutes without mishap! xxx

Dee Sewell Frances I'm so glad to hear that. I didnt want to jump to conclusions but pleased they're finally taking steps to address the situation. Thanks for your offer ðŸ˜Š not sure my back is up to it yet lol but will keep you posted! Xx

Margaret Denmead Delighted to hear that he is still here Frances. Give him a soft hug for me

Can we look after ourselves though!

I've always thought I would be a good politician ... or rather a good leader or person to be involved in governance ... as I have the self discipline to consider the impact on others before myself. Be it people, animals or the environment. I've even been accused of slowing things down to avoid killing insects on the windscreen! 
Now, though, as I finish a right binge of good food and drink and brilliant gatherings, I wonder if I have the self discipline to get my own self back to fitness, to meet 2020 in full spirit and health! I can apply myself to the needs and suffering of others but can I do it for myself? So far, I'm trying a binary approach. Ones and zeros only! Only one of each thing or a 'not for me, thank you' at all!
I already feel lighter, stronger, more positive and I'm only 48 hours into it!
I was content and accepting the first day but since the second, I've been disturbed beyond measure. I watched Salt of The Earth, a gruelling photo documentary about a brilliant Brazilian photographer Sebastiou someone who spent years in Ethiopia and Rwanda where millions of people were displaced, climate refugees, through drought. All, I learnt was that most famine is not a problem of provisions but a problem of sharing. The authorities refuse to let the aid get through to those dying. We've got our own fat cat government and it does't bode well, sadly.

Live Export Doggy Style

I witnessed first hand the terrifying experience of live export, last night, where I brought Lucretius my scaredy cat foster dog on holiday! It took me three stops to encourage him to step out to stretch his legs. He was pinned to the side of the car, eyes wild with fear. Obviously the idea of a holiday was new to him. He pictured abandonment or being run over or some horror anyway. He had Cupid who was super confident to follow and me who he trusts!!
What and who do the cows have to curb the panic and put their minds at rest? No one is bringing them water and promising them a wonderful break with lots of love and affection bestowed on them at the other end ? They are going either to stand in a ship's hold for 12 days straight, claustrophobic as hell and cold or hot, but too cramped to do anything about anything. Then they will either die straight away at a slaughter house or be put in individual huts which they use for veal or chained in a barn. Chaining them also stops them developing too much muscle as they can't move around - which is what veal eaters want, I gather.

At my local Apple Green drivers leave the animals bawling and go home for a  good night's sleep.

Anyway, Lucretius is delighted with my parents and the set up here.. To give him his due, he didn't wee or worse or eat or drink for the whole umpteen hours in the car it took to get here. It really makes me feel for those farm animals though. Let's stop it! 
What can a kind dairy farmer do with the calves instead, is what I want to know? He couldn't export them, 2 weeks old unweaned, freezing to death, crowded with pneumonia and no food or water on a ship abroad. He couldn't give them as veal potential to be kept in isolation in darkness to produce light, unmuscled meat. He couldn't cart them off to market to someone to buy 100 at a time to raise for meat in miserable barns of wet straw, more antibiotic jabs and relentless ringworm to torment them for their short lives. Maybe 'sucklers' are the best. I think that is like a horse having a foal at foot. The calf stays with its mother for a few months. I wonder there must be a better situation possible. 


Seamus Whitney Well said and done Frances Micklem. I'm on your side and hopefully your efforts will continue to inspire others. Enjoy Christmas in tune with the natural world around you. Seams.
Liselott Olofsson Hey Frances can I copy this and post it in my feed
Lucy Mizon Humane exploitation is a lie. Please don’t perpetuate that lie. Human Myth explained
Frances Micklem We're all trying to get people thinking here aren't we! I'm not perpetuating any lie or exploitation. I'm trying to get people to take a step or two in considering others in their purchases. Really a lot of people I have met have decided in a really blanket, black and white way that they don't want to give up even meat let alone eggs or dairy and are refusing to even look at ingredients or take any interest. People have to start by looking and seeing and then caring and then deciding not to perpetuate any of it. Even I gave up meat when it dawned on me, then fish a year later when it dawned on me, then eggs a few months later when it dawned on me, then dairy when I realized their situation, then honey, then I replaced all my leather tack for my horse and shoes. I want to inspire this rise of consciousness followed by the motivation to act on it. I'm sure there's a lot of people who, if they allowed themselves to consider the details of care and death would find that humane myth you mention would fall away!! And they'd find themselves making new choices and keep to them.

Lucy Mizon Frances Micklem but free range animals don’t have great lives for the short amount of time they’re allowed to be alive, and they all go to the same slaughterhouse regardless, so it’s not good to make people feel like they’re doing something good by buying into ‘welfare’ marketing.
Frances Micklem I certainly don't think any farm animals have great lives even with the meazly improvements in bedding and space required for organic standards or whatever...and don't start me on the five freedoms!!! The vet laughed in my face when I asked how they made sure animals on larger farms got their five freedoms. So anyway, Lucy, you know I agree with you and everyone knows I'm animal rights rather than animal welfare in that I stand for a no killing, no exploiting anyone or anything. I really don't believe my life is more important than any animal. Anyway, my post was intended to do the opposite of make people feel good about buying into marketing. I am always saying don't let anyone sell you anything! Always think about what is inside the packaging and how they suffered if not perished altogether to make the thing!! Thanks for interacting, it really opened up the topic more Fxx
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