Saturday, October 26, 2013

So, let me get this right. The hunters empathize with the endangered status.

And the hunters have money. But, they don't have available money unless they are allowed to kill an endangered black rhino. Is that right?

Does anyone actually believe there is morality in that? There isn't a gentlemen or gentlewoman among them. Normally, when this type of fundraising occurs the animal is spared while the monies go to the non-profit to protect them.

Any species of rhino are among the oldest living mammals on Earth. They are considered living fossils.

According to the World Wildlife Fund this species is critically endangered. Critically endangered means their genetic diversity is in jeopardy. Now, I want to know which Rhino the Texas hunters are going to kill to be sure it isn't the one with the greatest genetic diversity in contributing to the survival of the species. The WWF and the International Rhino Foundation estimates there are slightly more than 5000 individuals left. The Rhinos were at a total population of 50 in 1962. They have a life span of 30 to 35 years, breed for the first time at the age of five, the gestation time is 15 months, the calf is weaned from the female at the age of 18 months. That means the female is only mating about every 2.5 to 3 years. If the breeding life of a female is 25 years in the wild that means she will at the best produce about 6 to 8 calves if she breeds consecutively to her death.

The population growth of these rhinos is very slow and is compromised by poachers who take their horns for illegal trade.

The rhino in the picture in the upper left is not a black rhino, it is a white rhino. All rhino are actually grey, but, they have a distictive characteristic that separates the species. The black rhino has a pointed upper lip where the white rhinos lip is squared. It is an adaptation to the difference in their diets.

Threats (click here)
Earlier in the 20th Century hunting to clear land for agriculture and human settlement was the main cause for the decline of African rhinos. However, the single most important cause for the catastrophic decline of rhinos in the last quarter of the 20th century was the demand for their horn in the Middle Eastern and Eastern Asian markets. Historically, in medieval Europe, rhino horn was fashioned into chalices believed to have the power of detecting poisons. In the Far East, and in the many East Asian communities elsewhere, the horn is still used as a fever-reducing ingredient in traditional Chinese medicine; and in the Middle East it is carved and polished to make prestigious dagger handles.

Stockpile management is necessary to ensure horns collected from the field are secured in stockpiles, and therefore reduce the risk of leakage to the illegal market. However, stockpile management has traditionally received relatively little attention. Yet, in many places stockpiles continue to grow. In Africa, TRAFFIC has worked on this issue for over three years and has now documented almost 17 tonnes of horn with some stockpiles growing at 20% every four years. TRAFFIC also continues to assist a number of Parties strengthen horn stockpile management. Whilst TRAFFIC has witnessed marked improvements in levels of management recently, there remains room for improvement in many African range States. Further, quantities of horns and levels of stockpile management in Asian range States (especially India and Nepal) and consumer nations (e.g. China and Yemen) are not fully understood. Weaknesses in stockpile management may provide a loophole for leakage to illegal markets, thus undermining other field conservation efforts.

These animals are priceless. I cannot imagine the amount of money Texas hunters from the Safari Club can raise, but, it isn't enough to kill one of them.

...Carter said (click here) in a statement sent to AFP that the Namibian government "selected" his hunting club to auction a black rhino hunting permit for one of its national parks.

The permit is expected "to sell for at least $250,000, possibly up to $1 million. The Conservation Trust Fund for Namibia's Black Rhino will receive 100 percent of the sale price," said the statement.

Namibia has an annual quota to kill up to five black rhinos out of the southern African nation's herd population of 1,795 animals.

A single permit issued to a US hunter in 2009 to kill a black rhino fetched $175,000 for the Namibian Game Products Trust Fund which pays for conservation efforts, according to the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

Tim Van Norman, chief of the branch of permits at the FWS said the US government has not yet issued any permit to the Dallas Safari Club to return a rhino's carcass to the United States....

The real question with Christie is; will he turn to right wing extremism after his re-election to entice his nomination in 2016?

In other words, how close to the vest is Chris Christie playing his own re-election to facilitate his future ambitions? Will we see the other side of his personality that feeds his ambition? What is that phrase? Oh, yeah, Political Capital. Will the Governor spend his political capital once re-elected?

In all fairness, he once stated, "I am tired of the crazies." That was in relation to 2012 elections and the strong advocacy for his endorsement as a popular Governor by the Right Wing Tea Party. We'll see.

Something tells me the citizens of New Jersey keep their eye on the ball.

Employees (click here) of the Borough of Cadwell and a Caldwell firefighter listen in as Governor Chris Christie holds a meet and greet with seniors at the Caldwell Fire Department. Caldwell, NJ 10/24/13 (Robert Sciarrino/The Star-Ledger)

Martha T. Moore, USA TODAY  
2:05 p.m. EDT October 17, 2013

In August, (click here) New Jersey Republican Fernando Alonso heard great news at a county fundraiser: Gov. Chris Christie jokingly told the crowd that he would be spending so much time in the district helping Alonso defeat an incumbent Democratic state senator that he'd be charged property tax.

Seven weeks later, Alonso is still waiting for Christie to stump for him. Aside from both attending a seniors picnic last month -- where Christie directed his rhetorical fire at his own opponent -- the two haven't been on the trail together. "He will be here in the next month,'' Alonso spokesman Ira Treuhaft says. "We're very, very thankful for his support.''

Christie, running for his own reelection, may well be the first Republican to win more than 50% of the vote statewide since 1985. Opinion polls show him leading his Democratic challenger, state Sen. Barbara Buono, nearly two to one. But he isn't likely to win Republican control of the state legislature – and it isn't clear that he wants to. For a potential presidential candidate who wants to run as a Republican who can win a blue state, there's more mileage in having opponents in the legislature. And in a season where political intransigence is infuriating voters, Christie is busily sounding a bipartisan theme....

The GOP wants to change the dialogue about 'real' legislation.

The GOP wants to change the legislation process into "Easy to Read." Rather than a novel the GOP wants an abstract describing the purpose and conclusion of legislating.

Ever since "W" introduced the three page treaty, life is suppose to be easy. Look, if a party doesn't believe in education of their own constituents, that same party has to dummy down legislation so their constituents can actually relate to what they vote for.

The American Jobs Act was HACKED. It was hacked apart to decide what the GOP could live with and what they can't. It was hacked apart and destroyed the bipartisan emphasis President Obama wrote into the legislation. The GOP is screaming about bipartisanship and the President wants to be inclusive. Inclusiveness has been his focus since he first announced his candidacy for President. So, the GOP takes the inclusive bipartisan legislation the President and US Senate writes and hacks it into pieces to pass their partisan interests while discarding the bipartisan spirit of the law and trounces inclusiveness.

When the GOP complains The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act should be written by legislating smaller bills, it is nothing politics and their agenda of hate and exclusivity. When the GOP hacks apart the bills and budgets that are inclusive and bipartisan it is their agenda to exclude citizens they have no use for. Oh, the disabled, who needs them? The elderly, who needs them? The poor, who needs them? The uninsured, who needs them? But, the multi-trillion military is more than important even though widows can do without payments to maintain their families and homes when their spouses are killed. 

The exclusivity of the GOP and their demand for 3 page bills is out of the questions. It is discriminatory and reinforces the Exclusively Few Wealth Class.

Published time: October 26, 2013 01:51

Verizon and News Corp. (click here) are among the dozens of companies listed on the Standard & Poor’s 500 that paid a zero percent tax rate in the last year. The so-called effective tax rate is how investors explain the tax a company pays compared to its profit.

While it is not illegal in any way for major companies to pay a zero percent tax rate - or in some cases even less - Friday’s analysis by USA Today does highlight some of the creative methods those corporations use to avoid dipping into their profit margins, and how that may ultimately impact national policy on corporate taxation.

The top federal income tax rate currently sits at 35 percent, a number that has been the source of public frustration for many company executives. Yet Seagate (a data storage manufacturer with a market value of $15.9 billion), Public Storage (the largest self-storage firm in the world with a $29.5 billion market value), and others pay a lower tax rate than most individual middle-class American families.... 

I really don't want to hear how corporations aren't interested in the USA because of the tax rate. I really don't.