We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Sunday, December 18. 2016
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I found some poisoned (strychnine) wheat grains at my mom's house last summer. They weren't as old as this flyer.
It was a different time.
WWI was an excuse for a lot of wacky thinking.
Sort of like "Global Warming" today.
Ah, the good old days.
Half of the squirrel population dies every year for some reason or another. They make for a lot of road kill. I admit they are cute little rascals from a distance but if you ever see one up close you will notice immediately that they are indeed of the order Rodentia. Limb rats. That is an ugly mouth; unlike Jon Voigt in the movie version of Deliverance.
I suggest they be dispatched with Pb at a velocity of at least 1000fps. They make excellent coyote bait. Coyote pelts make a fine hat, coat or poncho.
The problem with poison is that another critter is apt to eat a strychnined carcass, thus passing the contaminate to an animal that does not need extermination. Cats and dogs enjoy a good dead squirrel.
Squirrels are like rabbits: the lower end of the food chain.
I don't eat 'em but I would if I had to. Public and Whole Foods will have to shut down their butcher shops before I will eat rodents.
I do not kill rabbits; I save them for their predators. Squirrels I will dispatch in a trice as I grow pecans. A squirrel will rob 50 pounds of nuts a year given the chance. That is $75 this year.
I feed them at the park. Peanuts, because they won't take almonds or sunflower seeds or donut shards or doggie treats. They know what they like.
Inside a few trips some become friendly enough to hand-feed. A few others occupy the bench with me but only singly because they are a little competitive. One perches on my arm on the back of the bench, fixing me with that bottomless little black eye, munching delicately on peanut halves held, of all places, between the sides of what I suppose would be thumbs on those tiny long hands they have.
It's interesting how they can break down a fairly hard nut without it ever shuddering in their light grasp. It's as if they turn it to butter first before mowing it down to nothing. It's a talent.
They're sweet little guys, except for sometimes being competitive among themselves. They invariably bait dogs by hanging upside down on palm trunks at dog height. The fastest, most determined dog is no match, and it's not uncommon for squirrels to emerge at the bottom reverse of a trunk, get the dog going at full clip chasing it across the grass, stop midway between two other trees, and change direction at a sharp angle toward another target entirely, the dog fumbling over his own feet trying to match trajectory. Which they never do. Then it's back to that weightless scampering around the new trunk, getting Fido's frustration up all over again.
After repeating the whole escapade, it's back to the first tree for no evident reason, proving that a few ounce squirrel can dupe any dog dumb enough to play about as many times as it wants. Evidently only the squirrel knows this and as far as I can tell, plans it.
The smaller ones - the newbies - take more time to acclimate but become emboldened they do when nuts are around. Cutest little darn things you can imagine, having at a short, hard life with all the resources and defenses given a hand-sized rodent. I find them nothing but cute, bright, and mischievous, and for their part, they find me trustworthy and apparently interesting, a foot from my face, peering intently out of those miniature, storybookish little faces.
I suppose they should all be dispatched with prejudice on sight, like God intended. Any maybe lit on fire as sacrificial evidence of man's great fealty to that which is greater than himself that he's never really even considered, man being the gentleman that he is, to paraphrase someone...
Your adjectives reveal you have anthropomorphized them quite thoroughly. It may be a mark of your humanity that you can attribute such qualities to them, but it doesn't change what they are really like.
What they really are is a rhetorical construct you gift yourself for your own ends and means. You've implied your intent without supporting it. I can explain this fallacy with its obvious corollary.
See, your rightist cultural inclinations have devalued other life to the point that you feel you need to imply human attributes as a universal gauge, standard, or metric of some characteristic or facility or merit. It's how you somehow get to "what they really are" as the baseless assertion and appeal to evidence not only not present, but inherently at odds with you, its presumptive agent.
In other words, the unthought "dispatching" we see around parts like these, where lifestyle signalling is so valued, common, predictable, and predictably moronic, asserts and assumes that animals are pests, tools, or purposed disposables and some external Universal Principle regards them as such for us, with us doing the noble "shepherding" and "husbandry" work of, as it actually turns out on this globe, not only ending any life for any reason we can gin up - from deep within your thou-shalt-not-kill moral matrix - but killing with prejudice because after all, for their part lowly animals just won't rise to the level we see ourselves on. They'll stoop to levels we never would, the bastards. It's what they really are.
Except that's evident bullshit, given our record as a species.
You catch that central fallacy? It's one where you deal yourself all the relative moral or intellectual cards in a game only you share the rules and goals of. It's damning your cow to be a burger because it refuses to speak and learn cribbage.
The problems with that are self-evident, but become even more offensive when we - and many times those with noted literary intellects far better than yours - regard all sorts of nobility, faithfulness, love, guilelessness, fealty, inter-species care, and so on and so on to animals while simultaneously devaluing those of them we don't want to think about while we typically abuse, neglect, or like I said, generally devalue them. And that's before we get to how we - and not they - treat our own kind.
This formulation of yours is rubbish, of course, because on any scale that regards these assumed abilities humans have for superiority, animals consistently and constantly outperform us. The relative accomplishments, per that list of attributes (versus your unthought, projected assumption about "what they really are") certainly favor them and not us, for they are simply and utterly incapable of the vast seas of agony we've soaked both they and ourselves in throughout history, all of it justified at the time.
Your formulation is therefore as actively full of shit as it is mindlessly ignorant of any of that, not because you're stupid, but because you don't care to expend the energy considering it. My cat and his horse and their dogs all do vastly better than you, relatively speaking, as they see to their jobs; the things they do with somewhat more seriousness, skill, and finesse than apparently countless humans do theirs as you revel in the implied superiority of your healthy bacon and your in-car fatburgers from carcasses you hired someone else to butcher because you've literally never seriously considered the alternative, as habitual as you are. It's what you really are.
I'm more than conscious enough to not anthropomorphize animals. I've simply not selectively devalued them. I've taken some time to try and understand how they tick, which as far as I can reasonably tell as a half-century pet "owner" and fan, is vastly better than the typical rightist lifestyling clownshow ever has, especially on any relative scale that they'd have the arrogance to project against a cartoon of their own stupendously bigoted ignorance.
My English Shepherd caught a grey squirrel and brought it home. He also dispatched a groundhog with one bite.
They are all around farm dogs and pest control is one of their jobs.