Daily Archives: November 11, 2011

Western Browsing Rhino Is No More

This refers to a subspecies of “Black Rhino” also known as the “browsing rhino.”

The Western Black Rhino of Africa was declared officially extinct Thursday by a leading conservation group.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature said that two other subspecies of rhinoceros were close to meeting the same fate.

The Northern White Rhino of central Africa is now “possibly extinct” in the wild and the Javan Rhino “probably extinct” in Vietnam, after poachers killed the last animal there in 2010.
A small but declining population survives on the Indonesian island of Java.


Black rhinos are fairly aggressive towards humans. I knew one who was hand reared and very friendly … you could and feed it and pet it and stuff. It lived at a non-profit/private reserve and tourists could park in the nearby lot and go over and see this rhino, as well as a white rhino also hand reared.

Last time I was there both rhinos were gone. The white rhino had been released into the wild and had started her own family. Here’s a picture I took of her when I caught up to her. (Which wasn’t hard, white rhinos are easy to find since they like open country where grass grows.)

The black rhino had been shot. One day he unexpectedly burst through the fence and went on a rampage. He didn’t hurt anyone but he did damage all the cars in the parking lot.

Here is his picture from when he was still alive.

No More No More Taxes?

Republican House members are increasingly separating themselves from Grover Norquist and Americans for Tax Reform, the interest group he leads. Specifically they’re disconnecting from ATR’s pledge to oppose any tax increase, The Hill reports.

While some congressmen signed the pledge recently, others did so years ago. Norquist began the pledge in 1986. ATR cites 238 House signers of its Taxpayer Protection Pledge, but several House Republicans accuse the group of being underhanded about it and want to remove their names from the list.

On its Internet display of the pledge’s signers, which includes all but six House Republicans, Americans for Tax Reform includes several congressmen who say they refused to sign it in last year’s election campaigns.

“I haven’t signed it since 1994,” Rep. Steven LaTourette

Read more on Newsmax.com: House GOP To Norquist: Our Tax Pledge Expired
Important: Do You Support Pres. Obama’s Re-Election? Vote Here Now!…


Religious Right Reacts To DOMA Repeal Vote

Yesterday, the Respect for Marriage Act, legislation that will repeal the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act, passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee on a 10-8 vote, naturally spurring outrage among Religious Right activists. The vote was not a surprise to conservative groups, who told activists to be ready to fight the bill on the floor of the Senate.

Focus on the Family’s political arm CitizenLink blasted the “ironically labeled the ‘Respect for Marriage Act’” and the Thomas More Society warned of the “great legal problems, great confusion” and the “actual human beings who will be hurt” if DOMA is no more.

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins told activists that if the Respect for Marriage Act passes….

What? Then what? Oh … something about your taxes, of course

There is a question about climate change from a gentleman in the fourth row.

He introduces himself as Richard Rothschild. He tells the crowd that he ran for county commissioner in Maryland’s Carroll County because he had come to the conclusion that policies to combat global warming were actually “an attack on middle-class American capitalism.” His question for the panelists, gathered in a Washington, DC, Marriott Hotel in late June, is this: “To what extent is this entire movement simply a green Trojan horse, whose belly is full with red Marxist socioeconomic doctrine?”

Here at the Heartland Institute’s Sixth International Conference on Climate Change, the premier gathering for those dedicated to denying the overwhelming scientific consensus that human activity is warming the planet, this qualifies as a rhetorical question….

Read the rest

Why Is Atheism a Bigger Obstacle to Political Office Than Mormonism?

” … A 1999 Gallup poll asked Americans whether they would vote for a well-qualified presidential candidate of their own party who happened to belong to one of the following groups: Catholic, Jewish, Baptist, Mormon, black, woman, gay, or atheist. Only 49 percent of Americans said they would vote for an atheist candidate, by far the lowest percentage of all the groups. By contrast, 79 percent said they would vote for a Mormon, and even 59 percent said they would vote for a gay candidate. All the other categories had better than 90 percent agreement.

In 2007, Gallup asked the same question again. In this more recent poll, Mormons’ popularity dropped to 72 percent, but again, the only category that a majority of voters refused to even consider was atheists. … “

at AlerNet

The Atlas of Birds: Diversity, Behavior, and Conservation

i-1e1b1a6fb17838b12c2bd64c0798e0f0-atlas_of_birds_mke_unwin.jpgHow are birds related to dinosaurs, crocodiles, and pterosaurs? Where do birds live, and not live? How many bird species are there, and how many actual birds, and how does this vary across the glob? What about endemics?; Where ate the most local species found? Mike Unwin’s The Atlas of Birds: Diversity, Behavior, and Conservation covers this and more in a richly illustrated detailed global survey of Aves.
Continue reading The Atlas of Birds: Diversity, Behavior, and Conservation