Did you ever grow anything in the garden of your mind?
Did you ever grow anything in the garden of your mind?
First there were face-eating zombies. Now the plague.
Highlights from the press release below include "People should contact their health care provider if plague is suspected" and "Avoid sick or dead rodents, rabbits and squirrels, and their nests and burrows." No problem.
Probable Case of Human Plague in Crook County Resident
Monday, June 11, 2012 - 7:31pm
Crook County is reporting a probable case of human plague. The individual is being hospitalized. Contacts of this individual have been notified and are receiving preventive antibiotics. Plague cases are rare in Oregon. It is spread to humans or animals through a bite from an infected flea or by contact with an animal sick with the disease.
People can protect themselves, their family members and their pets by using flea treatments on your pets to prevent them from bringing fleas into your home. Plague is serious but it is treatable with antibiotics if caught early. A domestic cat in Crook County tested positive for bubonic plague a year ago.
Only three human cases have been diagnosed in Oregon since 1995. According to Karen Yeargain, L.P.N., Communicable Disease Coordinator at the Crook County Health Department, the 1995 case was in a Deschutes County resident who was exposed to plague-infected fleas from household cats that hunted rodents in the fields. Two of three cats in that household also tested positive for plague exposure. In 2010, two human cases of plague were diagnosed in Lake County. Further investigation revealed that the family dog had also been exposed to plague. In 2011, an additional case with exposures in Lake County was diagnosed. There were no fatalities in humans or household animals in these cases.
Symptoms of plague typically develop within one to four days after exposure and include fever, chills, headache, weakness and a bloody or watery cough due to infection. Three clinical syndromes have been described; bubonic (lymph node infection), septicemic (blood infection), and pneumonic (lung infection). Bubonic plague is the most common form and is characterized by high temperatures, lethargy and swollen lymph nodes, most commonly in the neck and under the jaw. Infected lymph nodes may spontaneously abscess and drain.
People should contact their health care provider if plague is suspected and a veterinarian if pets or other animals exhibit symptoms consistent with the plague. Early treatment for pets and people with appropriate antibiotics is essential to curing plague infections. Untreated plague can be fatal for animals and people. Antibiotics to prevent or treat plague should be used only under the direction of a health care provider.
Plague can be passed from fleas feeding on infected wild mammals to pets such as cats and to their human owners. "To protect your pets, avoid allowing them access to areas with fleas or to other pets carrying fleas, and treat your pets for fleas to help prevent this disease," Yeargain said. "Call your local veterinarians for assistance in which products are safe for use in pets, because some treatments may be toxic to your pet."
Some additional steps to prevent flea bites are to wear insect repellant, tuck pant cuffs into socks when in areas heavily occupied by rodents, and avoid contact with wildlife including rodents. Pet owners are encouraged to keep cats indoors. Also, do not handle ill-appearing stray or wild animals.
Health authorities offer the following recommendations to prevent plague:
- Avoid sick or dead rodents, rabbits and squirrels, and their nests and burrows.
- Keep your pets from roaming and hunting.
- Talk to your veterinarian about using an appropriate flea control product on your pets.
- Clean up areas near the house where rodents could live, such as woodpiles, brush piles, junk and abandoned vehicles.
- Sick pets should be examined promptly by a veterinarian.
- See your doctor about any unexplained illness involving a sudden and severe fever.
- Put hay, wood, and compost piles as far as possible from your home.
- Don’t leave your pet’s food and water where mice can get to it.
- Veterinarians and their staff are at higher risk and should take precautions when seeing suspect animal plague cases.
Source: Crook County, State Public Health Veterinarian
If you haven't already heard about the face-eating zombie in Miami, then you're lucky. The details are gross. So I will balance out posting about that fascinating little tidbit with a little news item about UNICORNS.
Over the weekend the Miami Herald reported that right outside its building a naked man was found eating another naked man's face. True story. They even got parts of it on security camera.
That's right, the Miami Herald, not the Weekly World News, though rumors abound that this is the first sign of the zombie apocalypse.
I'm going to tell you right now, if you're squeamish, skip right down to the unicorns.
There's been a lot of speculation about just what caused Rudy Eugene to eat Ronald Poppo's face for 18 minutes — cocaine, LSD and bath salts are all options (the cops had a theory about these things "baking" you on the inside thus leading Eugene to get naked). Bath salts apparently don't make you smell good and relax in the tub (no, they make you eat people's faces off) rather they are some weird form of meth, or so says the National Institures of Health, which also warns:
… these products have been reported to trigger intense cravings not unlike those experienced by methamphetamine users …
Right, intense cravings to eat someone's face. I'm going to skip ever trying bath salts as a pick-me-up and stick with caffeine.
Gory details: The Miami Herald reports (and again, I warned you):
"He had his face eaten down to his goatee. The forehead was just bone. No nose, no mouth," said Sgt. Armando Aguilar, president of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police. "In my opinion, he just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time."
Sgt. Javier Ortiz, vice president of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, said it was one of the bloodiest "and goriest scenes I've ever been to."
"It was not only grotesque, it was just very sad, the amount of blood. It was very sad to see what happened to this gentleman that had his face eaten," Ortiz said.
And of course one unlucky dude happened to be cycling by:
Larry Vega was riding his bicycle off the causeway, which connects downtown Miami with Miami Beach, when he saw the attack.
"The guy was, like, tearing him to pieces with his mouth, so I told him, 'Get off!'" Vega told Miami television station WSVN (http://bit.ly/L6kwWt). "The guy just kept eating the other guy away, like, ripping his skin."
Vega flagged down the Miami police officer, who can be seen exiting his car on the Herald video. Vega said the officer repeatedly ordered the attacker to get off. Eugene just picked his head up and growled at the officer before continuing to maul his victim, Vega said.
The officer shot Eugene, but he just kept chewing, Vega said. The officer fired again, killing Eugene.
Now for UNICORNS.
Ok, well, I lied. It's really politics. CNN is reporting that a group satirizing "birthers" (those folks who still insist Obama is a damn foreigner) has asked Arizona to prove Mitt Romney is not a unicorn.
Without such proof, the group Left Action argues with tongue in cheek, Romney may indeed be a unicorn -- his dark mane hiding a horn -- and therefore ineligible to be on the presidential ballot in November.
The group called Left Action says it has 19,000 emails already.
Portland actor Isaac Lamb proposed to his girlfriend on Wednesday. The video's already gone viral. It's worth a watch — cute but not in the way that makes you wince. It makes you giggle.
And as long as we're on the topic. It's about to be June and that IS wedding season after all … Head's up, some of these are corny (you know, cute, but corny). And I can't help but to wonder how the heck are these guys so organized? Number 2 is the best one.
A news story about how organic foods might make people act like jerks is making the internet rounds this week, with gems like this:
"I stopped at a market to get a fruit platter for a movie night with friends but I couldn't find one so I asked the produce guy," says the 40-year-old arts administrator from Seattle. "And he was like, 'If you want fruit platters, go to Safeway. We're organic.' I finally bought a small cake and some strawberries and then at the check stand, the guy was like 'You didn't bring your own bag? I need to charge you if you didn't bring your own bag.' It was like a 'Portlandia skit.' They were so snotty and arrogant."
As it turns out, new research has determined that a judgmental attitude may just go hand in hand with exposure to organic foods. In fact, a new study published this week in the journal of Social Psychological and Personality Science, has found that organic food may just make people act a bit like jerks.
Also big in food news this week is "meat glue." Will it be the next pink slime?
Transglutaminase (TG or TGase), better known to chefs as “Meat Glue,” has the amazing ability to bond protein-containing foods together. Raw meats bound with TG are often strong enough to be handled as if they were whole uncut muscles. TG is safe, natural, and easy to use. In the kitchen, TG is primarily used to:
• Make uniform portions that cook evenly, look good, and reduce waste
• Bind meat mixtures like sausages without casings
• Make novel meat combinations like lamb and scallops
• Produce special effects like meat noodles, meat and vegetable pastas (using gelatin as a binder), etc. Additionally, TG can thicken egg yolks, strengthen dough mixtures, thicken dairy systems, and increase yield in tofu production, among other useful applications.
Umm, increase yield in TOFU production? Heads up hippies.
Dogs Against Romeny is not going to let sleeping dogs lie when it comes to presidential hopeful Mitt Romeny and the time he stuck his Irish setter Seamus in a kennel and strapped it to the roof of his car.
Now they have a dog theme song. Warning the language is for mature audiences only. The dog curses in an Irish brogue.
On April 2012 Copenhagen Phil (Sjællands Symfoniorkester) surprised the passengers in the Copenhagen Metro by playing Griegs Peer Gynt. The flash mob was created in collaboration with Radio Klassisk http://radioklassisk.dk/. All music was performed and recorded in the metro.
Here's to hoping the Eugene Symphony will flash mob the EmX.
Lane County would like you to know that budget cuts means they will be releasing people from the Lane County Jail. (See the press release below). Budget cuts also mean that services to help kids, familes, the homeless, homeless pets and rural law enforcement to name a few things will also be cut.
DATE/TIME OF RELEASE: May 10, 2012 3:00 PM
NATURE OF STORY: Capacity Based Releases
During the week of April 30 to May 7, 2012, a look at only sentenced offenders revealed that 13 offenders were released from the Lane County Adult Correctional Facility prior to serving their full sentences. These 13 offenders were sentenced to a total of 344 days in jail and served an actual total of 56 days due to lack of jail capacity.
When the Lane County Jail gets full, which is more often than not, difficult decisions must be made about who to release from custody. These decisions are made by a validated program called the Risk Assessment Tool that assigns a numerical value to each offender, both sentenced and those awaiting trial. This score takes a plethora of data into account including the defendant/ offender’s current charges, past convictions, and rate of failure to appear in court. The result is a Capacity Based Release, a CBR, or in plain terms, an inmate walking out the door before they appear in court or their sentence is up.
At the end of June, due to budgetary cutbacks, the Sheriff’s Office is scheduled to close 131 of their 351 jail beds, and 131 defendants and offenders will walk out the doors of the jail and into our communities. They will have been “CBRd.” Take away the 85 jail beds that the county has contracted out to other agencies and that leaves only 120 beds available for local offenders in a county that should have a jail with around 1200 beds.
While the jail has a history of opening and closing beds as money ebbs and flows, this will be the least amount of jail beds we have had to operate with for more than a decade, when we had approximately 29,000 fewer residents in Lane County. Back in 2008 when the jail closed 84 beds due to lack of funding, the average number of CBRs per day rocketed up to 12.5 per day. In 2009, when the beds were able to be reopened, that number fell back to an average of 8.8 CBRs per day. In July of 2011, those 84 beds were once again closed, leaving the jail capacity where it is right now, at 351 beds. But the jail can only fill 93% of those beds with inmates due to a Federal Consent Decree to prevent overcrowding, leaving the jail with only 326 beds for inmates.
Capacity Based Release History:
FY 09/08 4579 CBRs (Jail closed 84 beds) FY 09/10 3216 CBRs (84 beds reopened)
FY 10/11 2595 CBRs FY 11/12** 3293 CBRs (84 beds closed again)
**Numbers as of March 31, 2012 for FY 11/12.
At this rate, the projected total number of CBRs for FY 11/12 will be over 4,400. With the closure of 131 beds in June, the number of CBRs is expected to increase drastically.
On a side note, I can't help but to note that the county provides an acronym for "capacity based release," which is CBR. But it does not provide an acronym for Risk Assessment Tool.
In plain terms, "difficult decisions" about who to release early from jail. are being made by a computer program named RAT.
Was the last-minute meeting Lane County held to vote on releasing allegations against Commissioner Rob Handy on the morning of May 3 an open meeting? Handy has said the allegations themselves were timed not only to hurt him in the election, but also to detract from the recent revelation that his opponent Pat Farr was convicted of drunk driving.
Though the handwritten note that stemmed the allegations was received by John Brown months ago on Feb. 21, he and attorney Alan Thayer waited until shortly before the May 15 election to release the information, Handy says. According to the R-G Thayer and Farr are good friends. The decision itself to release the information happened at rapid speed — perhaps scheduled too quickly for anyone who didn't know to check email early that morning to attend?
The email received by the press giving notice of the "emergency meeting" was time-stamped 7:42 am May 3. The meeting was held at 9 am and consisted of the conservative majority of the board — Commissioners Sid Leikin, Jay Bozievich and Faye Stewart and County Administrator Liane Richardson. The vote was 3-0 to release the information. Neither Handy nor fellow progressive commissioner Pete Sorenson was there.
By 9:45 am, Richardson had already composed and sent out this email to county staff:
At a press conference today Commissioner Rob Handy addressed allegations that he says are timed to cause maximum damage to his re-election campaign. This is not the first time the liberal minority of the county commission has been targeted. See today's cover story on the Politics of Personal Destruction as well as last year's Shifty Politics.
The Board of Lane County Commissioners had an emergency meeting at 9 am this morning to discuss a public records request on the issue.
The press release starts off:
May 3, 2012
An emergency meeting of the Lane County Commission was held this morning, beginning at 9 am, for the purpose of responding to a request for a public records release. The request comes following the filing of a letter by Eugene Attorney Alan Thayer on behalf of Eugene resident and property [and] business owner, John H. Brown.
Central to the request are allegations contained in the letter. It is addressed to Lane County Commissioner Rob Handy and copied to the District Attorney, Secretary of State and the Oregon Government Ethics Commission. Commissioner Handy is alleged to have solicited contributions from certain individuals to help him pay off the money he agreed to reimburse the County for the Dumdi v. Handy case.
The letter was received late yesterday, Wednesday, May 2. Lane County officials will work with state officials that are now involved in the case.
It then goes on to note that, " Those attending this mornings emergency session included County Administrator Liane Richardson, Commission Chair Sid Leiken, County Commissioner Faye Stewar[t] and County Commissioner Jay Bozievich."
The commissioners in attendance were the conservative board majority, which often votes in opposition to Handy and liberal commissioner Pete Sorenson. Richardson, who was also present, made harassment allegations against Handy that were deemed unfounded. She based her claims on that Handy and Sorenson had voted against her being hired as "permanent" county administrator and accused him of having negative body language towards her.
Notification of the meeting was sent out at 7:42 am this morning. Handy said at the press conference today that he did not get the email in time to attend the emergency meeting. The board usually meets on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, not Thursday.
Handy said in his remarks today:
This complaint of Mr. Brown’s is coming forward in this manner and at this time was coldly and cynically planned to make sure that when the truth comes out, the election will be over. The attorney representing him is known for these kinds of tactics as well. If he was truly concerned about my behavior in this matter, he would have filed a complaint months and months ago after my request of him for a donation.
Handy then explained the donation issue:
Speaking directly to this issue of Mr. Brown’s filings: I found out earlier this year that a constituent who thought the fact that I had to repay Lane County any money related to the Dumdi lawsuit was unfair and had gone down to Lane County and paid some money against this debt.
I was surprised to learn that this was an option – that people who felt the lawsuit settlement was unfair could help out in this way. I contacted the Finance Department at Lane County to confirm that this was true.
I was told by the Finance Department that this was true and that people could pay directly to this debt either publicly or anonymously. I found out the process from Lane County on the details of how to do that so that I could share this information with my supporters. I knew that there were many folks who felt that this debt was an unfair burden on me as an elected official and would want to help.
After finding out this information from Lane County, I did ask several supporters to assist with this debt. I believe that some people did go down to Lane County and make a payment of this sort. I am grateful to whoever did go and make such a payment – this is my first opportunity to express that gratitude.
Once my campaign started, I did ask a few of my supporters for assistance with donating to my campaign or to this debt or one or the other or both. There was nothing wrong with that then or now. In fact, I still hope that people will respond to this appeal. There are many out there who feel that this debt was unfair and who may still want to assist with repayment.
Both the allegations and Handy's press statement are attached below.
In a 3-2 vote, with the conservatives in the majority, the Lane County Board of Commissioners decided to drop the appeal of the mining on Parvin Butte. Commissioners Pete Sorenson and Rob Handy voted against dropping the appeal. Sid Leiken, Faye Stewart and Jay Bozievich voted to drop it. Stewart is the commissioner for east Lane County where the butte and the small community of Dexter that surrounds the gravel mine is located. You can watch the meeting and hear the discussion on the Lane County web page.
But those Blackhawk helicopters people are seeing overhead today are part of a training exercise (OR SO THEY SAY). Here's the press release from the Eugene Police Department:
Multi-Agency Emergency and Disaster Exercise Will Take Place in Eugene Area May 2 and 3.
This advisory is to let media know in advance of a multi-agency emergency and disaster exercise on May 2 and 3 that might prompt calls from the public. There will be an unusual amount of emergency service vehicles, aircraft and other activity they will see in areas around Eugene, particularly Autzen Stadium, Hayward Field, RiverBend Hospital, Eugene Airport, Howe Field, Alton Baker Park, and the UO Soccer Field. In addition to the general information in this advisory, please refer to the Oregon Military Department’s release, included below.
As part of emergency services and security training for the 2012 Olympic Track and Field Trials to be held in Eugene this June, local emergency responders and other agencies are taking advantage of the opportunity presented by participation in the Oregon National Guard’s Vigilant Guard statewide exercise. The local exercise will be a multi-agency exercise taking place May 2 and 3, that will include aircraft and helicopters near Autzen Stadium and other locations. Commercial flights and general aviation activities at the Eugene Airport will not be impacted by the exercise.
Participating will be Oregon National Guard; State Fire Marshal; local police, fire and emergency medical services; University of Oregon; Eugene Airport; hospitals; city and county agencies; and individuals. Lessons learned from the exercise will be applicable across a wide variety of mass hazards and casualty scenarios.
Because one of the main goals of the Eugene exercise is to increase security measures prior to the Olympic Track and Field Trials, unfortunately there will not be an opportunities provided for videotaping, beyond what can be seen by the general public.
It was May Day yesterday and Occupy Wall Street affiliated groups were out across the country. Portland had some action last night. Here, Occupy Eugene's May Day rally was preceded by peacekeeping training.
The Eugene Police Department arrived at the bank protest in riot gear … and then they left.
I realize that in the U.S. the Eurovision Song Context doesn't make headlines unless the Finns show up dressed in monster costumes. But it is underway, with the final decision at the end of the May. It has everything good music, bad music (ABBA and Celine Dion are among previous winners) and political intrigue.
I'm weirdly fascinated by the entry from Moldava in 2011 and their gnome costumes and the gnome fairy on a unicycle.
But I have to tell you, this year it's the Russian entry I have fallen in love with. I want them all to be my grandmother.