American Elephants

Political Correctness Trumps Common Sense, and National Security by The Elephant's Child

MG_2867Oxford University Press, a leading publisher of schoolbooks, has banned its authors from mentioning pigs, sausages or anything pork related in their books, lest the words offend Muslims and Jews. Observant Jews may follow Kosher laws as far as the food they eat, but I have never heard that they are offended by the mention of pigs. So much for the Three Little Pigs, Olivia, and Charlotte’s Web. The publisher wants to avoid anything that could offend anyone in any of the 150 countries in which they hope to sell their schoolbooks.

Separately, Duke University announced that it would allow the “adhan” — the Muslim call to prayer to be broadcast across campus every Friday, saying that it would enhance the religious plurality on campus. More than a few people weighed in on that decision, and Duke University decided — never mind. No one has noticed other major universities falling all over themselves to appeal to any other religious minorities. Mostly, our enlightened academics are attacking Evangelic religions, deploring religiosity, and deploring anything connected with religion .

But, you see, we have a religion amongst us, some of whose adherents do take offense at unbelievers. The fear of giving offense seems mostly to be found in the halls of academe — the very place where young students are supposed to be learning ‘critical thinking skills’ and honoring freedom of speech, yet here in the United States of America Smith College President Kathleen McCartney had to apologize to her students for saying “All Lives Matter” instead of the politically correct “Black Lives Matter.”

And many American universities are having conflict over whether or not to defund any investments in stocks that include Israeli products, because they believe that Israelis are mean to the poor terrorists in Gaza and the West Bank.

It’s been a long time since I graduated from college, but I never remember any professor even giving a hint about their political preferences. They would not have considered that to be ethical. Like I said, it was a long time ago.

Inflation: Hiding and Disguising It So You Won’t Notice by The Elephant's Child


Inflation is reckoned to be around 1.3% or nothing significant. Women who do the bulk of grocery shopping would probably disagree. But inflation is disguised in the grocery store in many different ways, some noticeable, and some that are downright sneaky. Packaging that seems to be the same size, same price, if you look closely will contain only 12 oz. instead of the previous 16 oz.  See sugar, granulated, and flour, all-purpose. Some cereal boxes were as tall as usual and as wide across, but thinner.

Baker’s Unsweetened Baking Chocolate was up-front and brazen about the whole thing. Bars were uniformly 8 oz. Suddenly, the new box was headlined “NEW! 4 oz Easy Break Bar. Same great chocolate”with a little illustration showing how easy it was to break the bar apart. Only problem was that you were getting half as much for the same price.They have now removed the “New” line, whether because of objections or only because they thought you’d had enough time to get used to it, I don’t know. I have more respect for companies that don’t try to fool you.

Facial tissues are 1 ply thinner, as are most paper napkins. But did you notice this one? Toilet tissue, probably depending on the brand, has gotten about an inch narrower. You only notice it by paying attention to how the roll fits into the fixture. Sneaky!

Inflation is measured on a specific basket of commodities. I don’t know what items count. Certainly the drop in the price of gas is deflationary. I don’t know when the drop in transportation costs will be reflected in the price of groceries. But the droop will be reflected throughout the economy.

An interesting side note: Larry Kudlow reported this weekend that the drop in the price of gasoline, graphed, was matched exactly by the graphed rise in business at fast food restaurants.

Mrs. Obama Has Named a New Food Czar, Who Believes in “Food Justice.” by The Elephant's Child

B4l5uTsCYAAgUgdB4Wpse8IUAEEkKuFirst Lady Michelle Obama has named a new Executive Director  of “Let’s Move”— one Debra Eschmeyer. a self-described “food justice” activist,”and a former editor of Food Justice magazine.

Food Justice,” she said,”seeks to ensure that the benefits and risks of where, what, and how food is grown, produced, transported, distributed, accessed, and eaten are shared fairly.”

It represents a transformation of the current food system, including but not limited to eliminating disparities and inequities.

Oh oh.

Debra Eschmeyer reportedly grew up on a dairy farm, is an organic farmer herself, and represents the left’s war on fast food restaurants, “sugary sweet drinks” (of course), and wants to make sure the kids are eating “healthy foods.” She was inspired by Rachel Carson’s discredited “Silent Spring” that influenced the global warming crowd. Plant based diets, vegetarian diets, get rid of cows, tie everything up with “sustainability,” ecological impact, pesticides, anti-GMO foods, and basically anything that tastes good.

Food Justice argues for transformation of the whole food industry into something they like better.

“In today’s food system, farm workers face difficult and hazardous conditions, low-income neighborhoods lack supermarkets but abound in fast-food restaurants and liquor stores, food products emphasize convenience rather than wholesomeness, and the international reach of American fast-food franchises has been a major contributor to an epidemic of ‘globesity,’” a description of the book states. “To combat these inequities and excesses, a movement for food justice has emerged in recent years seeking to transform the food system from seed to table.”

When they get off on “organic food” and start celebrating “local food” they are wandering off the reservation. “Organic” is purely a marketing  ploy for those who have been persuaded that pesticides are dangerous. There is no additional nutritional value, organic growers do use pesticides made from poisonous pyrethrums, and “natural” fertilizer from manure, which if not properly composted can contain e-coli. Even the Department of Agriculture admits that “organic” is only about marketing.

We are fortunate today that in midwinter we can get foods from South America and Australia and not have to depend on canned foods. The fact that fresh foods can be shipped all over the world and remain inexpensive is a tremendous bounty. Naturally, the food police would be opposed.

Every year we get advice from the federal government on what to ear for good health. It usually turns out to be wrong. They were wrong about butter, carbohydrates, fat, meat, and fruit.

Michelle Obama’s idea of reducing childhood obesity by cutting the calories in every student’s diet has left kids hungry, and angry. They have flooded the internet with pictures of their school lunches, and who would blame them? Only a small percentage of kids are actually obese, but these lunches put everyone on a diet.

B4hgD1sCQAA7I_jB4mBoiDCUAATkK3B2_QYa9CEAAGJU2.jpg largeMystery meat, whole grain hotdog buns. No wonder most of the lunches end up in the garbage can. School districts are dropping out of the program because there is too much waste.

No eye appeal at all. Would you eat this crap? I cannot stomach the very language of the “food justice” program, let alone the food the kids are supposed to eat.

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