A Brighter Future
By R. D. Flavin

.... Threats will not lead to a brighter future for the North Korean people, nor weaken the resolve of the United States and our allies to achieve the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.  Today's claim by North Korea serves only to raise tensions, while depriving the North Korean people of the increased prosperity and better relations with the world offered by the implementation of the joint statement of the six-party talks.  The oppressed and impoverished people of North Korea deserve that brighter future.  Thank you.
From: "Statement on North Korea Nuclear Test" by Pres. George W. Bush, Oct. 9, 2006.

The Secretary-General is deeply concerned by the news that the Government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea has conducted a nuclear test, in spite of repeated worldwide efforts to discourage it from doing so. This action violates international norms of disarmament and non-proliferation, as well as the current international moratorium on nuclear testing. It aggravates regional tensions in and around the Korean Peninsula, and jeopardizes security both in the region and beyond. The Secretary-General calls on all parties to respond to this grave challenge in a constructive manner, and calls for serious negotiations to be renewed urgently in the framework of the six-party talks. The Secretary-General views this test as yet another reason for the international community to renew its collective effort to bring the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty into force and to make progress towards multilateral nuclear disarmament.
"Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on DPRK nuclear test," Oct. 9, 2006.

Click here for a vulgar, though appropriate, quote.  Warning: Graphic Language!

Kim Jong Il, starving N. Korean child and a nuclear mushroom cloud.

     Around 9:30 PM last Sunday night (EST GMT -5, Oct. 8, 2006) it’s believed someone from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (NKT GMT +9, 11:30 AM Monday morning, Oct. 9, 2006) notified the People's Republic of China (CCT GMT +8, 10:30 Monday morning) that they intended to perform a nuclear test.  At 9:38 PM seismographs recorded activity suggestive of a small nuclear explosion somewhere in North Korea.  George W. Bush, President of the United States of America, appeared on television Monday morning and read a statement between 9:58 and 10:01 AM.  The United Nations Security Council voted to elect His Excellency Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea, as the next Secretary-General and then drafted a statement denouncing the DPRK nuclear test.  The statement was released shortly before 10:38 AM and was quickly followed by a personal statement from the current U. N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan.  By noon blast estimates ranging from the 1 kiloton by the French Republic to the 5,000 to 15,000 tons of TNT by the Russian Federation were being discussed.  Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing telephoned U. S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in the afternoon.  It’s doubtful any North Koreans other than some high ranking DPRK officials or a few covert North Korean human rights activists are aware that Pres. Bush twice mentioned a “brighter future” for the people of North Korea.   It’s equally unlikely North Koreans would interpret a “brighter future” as Bush intended.

     Early Wednesday Japan initially believed a 6.0 magnitude earthquake was evidence that North Korea had conducted a second nuclear test.  South Korea informed anyone who would listen that they were very nervous.  China suggested a slap to punish the DPRK and Japan ceased all trade with North Korea and stopped six merchant ships from unloading their cargo of gourmet matsutake mushrooms.  It must be just an odd coincidence that North Korea suffers from constant food shortages, yet is capable of exporting mushrooms as a cash crop.  Perhaps mushrooms, in some shape or form, will have a role in the “brighter future” Pres. Bush spoke of.

     Ten years and two weeks ago I made my first contribution to the Internet by posting a bit of silliness to the Usenet newsgroup, sci.anthropology.  Kismet or the simple fact that some topics are worth returning to?

Cooking With Canines or How Much Is That Doggie In The Window?
By R. D. Flavin

     Saddened and somewhat disturbed after reading a recent NEW YORK TIMES story which mentioned the lack of village cats or dogs in North Korea, the issue of cultural cuisine and what constitutes the difference between a pet and dinner, became of paramount importance to me. After telephone calls to federal and state agencies, an afternoon at the library, and a visit to an Asian market/restaurant, I've satisfactorily demonstrated the distinguishable trait of a pet seems a "name," while for dinner, a bottle of ketchup or other condiment placed on the table seems a clear indication of what's to come. The domestication of wolves and jackals gave rise to the myriad of dog breeds in existence today. Though this process could be argued to date back to HOMO ERECTUS and an early competition for food, it's only with the beginnings of permanent settlements c. 12,000 BP, we begin to encounter such characteristics as the upturned tail and smaller teeth, which combined with the ability to bark, describe the distinctions between early and modern canines. While the dog was both annoying scavenger and assistant to the hunt, there is ample evidence that dog-flesh was also consumed on a fairly regular basis. Today's concept of MARKET ECONOMY necessitates an appreciation of poverty and such situations which would require (encourage?) a break with societal, religious, kinship or other such calibers. Poverty, real or imagined, ancient or modern, inspires some to behave in ways most would deem improper – yet, honestly, HUNGER will fly in the face of LEVITICUS 11:27, "And whosoever goeth upon his paws, among all manner of beasts that go on all four, those are unclean unto you: whoso toucheth their carcass shall be unclean until the even." Many, such as those students trapped in the Andes from an aircrash, who ate their FRIENDS to stay alive, would not hesitate to eat MAN'S BEST FRIEND, ...if they were really HUNGRY. We cross a line here – what is necessary and what is not. During THE WORLD CONFERENCE ON WOMEN IV in China last year, the Roman Catholic Church took out full-page ads in major newspapers to decry the abominable practice of some Chinese – the cannibalistic consumption of human fetuses for magical enhancement. Such a culture assuredly loves pets; I'm reminded of the man, who when asked if he liked kids, replied: "Sure! With a wild-rice stuffing and a side of baked beans, I love 'em!" In the second volume of John Dominic Crossan's "Historical Jesus Trilogy," JESUS: A REVOLUTIONARY BIOGRAPHY, this century's leading investigator of Jesus remarks in the chapter "The Dogs Beneath The Cross," that: "But what we often forget about crucifixion is the carrion below and scavenger dog who respectively croak above and growl below the dead or dying body." Prof. Crossan can well imagine that the cynic philosopher's fate was an inevitable consumption by the wild dogs of ancient Jerusalem. I hesitatingly offer an addition – considering the metropolitan nature of ancient Jerusalem and its many non-LEVITICUS followers, if such a corpse was eaten by dogs, a fair proposal would be that the dogs were, in turn, eaten by HUNGRY people. Maybe something of HIM does survive, after all. Federal, and, hence, most state laws allow for the approved consumption of any flesh which is clean, healthy, and not on any endangered species list. Lions, tigers, and bears are only the easy vanguard of exotic flesh. Lion ribs? Sure, for a price from a market in Tinley Park, IL. And cats and dogs? I've joked, when pestered by my cats, that I'd sell them to a market for "seventeen cents a pound." Never again. Though I've some fat cats, the amount I'd receive, wouldn't be worth the trouble of travel. Some flesh really is that cheap. If not cheaper.
The End.

    Ouch!  Economic sanctions only hurt the hungry and haven’t deterred Kim Jong Il in the least.  The DPRK “Dear Leader” continues to encourage the reprinting of his “On Some Questions in Understanding the Juche Philosophy,” with recent publishing in Mongolia, Venezuela and Romania.  His previous writings on opera and cinema are also selling well enough, though aren’t nearly as popular as his new work, Everything You Wanted to Know About North Korea but Were Afraid to Ask (Victoria, BC, CA: Trafford; 2006).   I suppose a cook-book is inevitable...

The ASPCA reminds us what month it is...

Also, please see:

Animal Cruelty Overview, Disaster Preparedness, Pet Care & Poison Control

What Constitutes Animal Cruelty?

     The “Axis of Evil” from Bush’s 2002 State of the Union Address hasn’t disappointed.  Though, in fairness, the “Allies Against Evil,” with France barking more salaciously than Italy and Spain, haven’t exactly served as role-models for contribution and responsibility.  In several states, Massachusetts for instance, animal abuse is now a felony punishable by up to five years in prison and $2500 in fines.  At least in South Korea some are now questioning the difference between a dog and dinner

     Though China has suggested a scolding rather than a mushroom cloud, I continue to trust that China will eventually face this new crisis.  The DPRK version of North Korea has been characterized as “The Soprano State,” from the government sponsored crime that produces everything from fake cash to bogus Viagra.  China now has one trillion dollars under their collective straw-stuffed mattresses and it appears they need to either physically require Kim Jong Il take a much needed and deserved “time out” period or spread some of that capitalism around the neighborhood.  Or both.  After all, China is in range, too.

North Korea's Nuclear Path, © 2005 The Washington Post.  Used without permission.

     I hope Pres. Bush gets his wish and the people of North Korea enjoy a bright future, a good meal every now and then, and cable television and broadband Internet access when all of this nuclear insanity is behind us.  I’m voting for China in this, regardless of their crappy politics, because they’re a great people, mindful of their history and possessing a true desire to appreciate a brighter future.  North Korea consists of a million soldiers and a crazy guy in charge, not unlike other nations (wink-nudge), and I hope they like Chinese food.  I do.

     South Korea and China are presently hoping for improved behavior from Kim Jong Il, as any conflict would certainly involve refugees seeking food and freedom.  For shame, neighbors!  The starving child from North Korea pictured above is reproduced from “Undercover in the Secret State,” a 2005 documentary by Kim Jung Eun, CNN and ABC Sydney.  I hope that child and all the starving in North Korea enjoy a bright future.  Without dog meat, that is, unless it's really necessary.


See also: “The Reunification Church or How Much Is That Nuclear Bomb In The Window?

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