Avoid The Muthoot Plaza snack bar, terminal 2, Mumbai


Have we got an ambassador to Madagascar?

If we haven’t perhaps Murray McCully might like to put Trevor Mallard’s name forward as Ambassador to Madagascar.

His expertise in dealing with the feral animals?in Labour could prove invaluable.

Madagascar?is at risk of a major outbreak of?bubonic plague?unless it can clean up its rat-infested jails, health experts have warned.

The Indian Ocean island became the most severely affected country in the world last year, with 256 cases and 60 fatalities from the disease known as the “black death” when it swept through Europe in the 14th century.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Malagasy prison authorities have?launched a campaign against rodents?in Antanimora prison in the capital, Antananarivo, where 3,000 inmates are behind bars.

Christoph Vogt, head of the ICRC delegation in Madagascar, said: “The chronic overcrowding and the unhygienic conditions in prisons can bring on new cases of the disease. That’s dangerous not only for the inmates but also for the population in general.”? Read more »

Five ways to know you’re eating rat meat

Following on from my post yesterday about rat meat in China, Foreign Policy has helpfully found 5 ways to know you are eating rat meat.


Foreign Policy?reached out to North Carolina-based artist?Laura Ginn, who, after organizing a rat-themed?five-course dinner?in New York last year, has become somewhat of a rat meat connoisseur. With her help, we hereby offer you five ways to know you’re eating rat.

1. It smells like rat. Rats secrete an oil onto their skin that gives them their distinct “rodenty” odor. Some compare the smell to that of a warm tortilla, says Ginn, while others compare it to urine. Regardless, it’s distinctive. While it’s true that the odor lessens after the rat is skinned, and again after the rat is cooked, no amount of cooking can ever completely get rid of the smell.

2. It tastes like rat.?The oil rats secrete gives them a distinctive taste as well. Ginn describes it as quite pungent and gamey — most similar to raccoon or rabbit. Blended with other meats, rat becomes a lot less distinctive, so you’d have to be rather discerning to notice it.? Read more »


Meat is meat isn’t it? Fancy a bit of fox or rat?

There has been a crack down in China on dodgy meat vendors. Can’t see what?the?problem is…I’ve blogged about eating guinea pigs before…rats aren’t too far off that. I ate rats in?Thailand…off a bbq on the side of the road. Very tasty.

Chinese police have arrested 904 people and seized 20,000 tonnes of illegal products since the turn of the year, in an investigation into “meat-related offences” which revealed fox, mink and rat meat all being passed off as mutton.

Suspects in Baotou produced fake beef and lamb jerky from duck meat and sold it to markets in 15 provinces. Levels of E coli in the product “seriously exceeded standards”, the country’s Public Security Ministry said.? Read more »


So that’s how Trevor does it, he is the encoder rat

I’ve always wondered how Trevor Mallard managed to control his caucus members, now I know how:

Scientists have connected the brains of lab rats, allowing one to communicate directly to another via cables.

The wired brain implants allowed sensory and motor signals to be sent from one rat to another, creating the first ever brain-to-brain interface.

The scientists then tested whether the rat receiving the signal could correctly interpret the information.

As the ultimate test of their system, the team even linked the brains of rats that were thousands of miles apart.? Read more »

Gareth Morgan still hates pussy

It is official, Gareth Morgan is not into pussy in any way, shape or form.? Who knows, maybe he was terrified by one as an infant but KiwiBank must be moving quickly to rebrand the under-performing fund they overpaid for.

I have a name suggestion for them, how about ?KiwiBank Saver?? I can even do up a logo because at the rate Morgan?s mouth is going, I seriously doubt you will have many customers left.

But proving Morgan must have a taste for public sadomasochism, he has popped up on that soft cock Campbell Live last night.? This time Morgan unleashed his much vaunted phase II master stroke; a $5 bounty on each cat.

If the SPCA are clever, they should send him a bill for every cat they have to euthanize. As you all know I don?t much like cats but I don?t like animal abusers either.? I can see Morgan?s brainless idea unleashing fruitcakes claiming the bounty. This will get nasty since it comes from a desperate mad nasty little man who cannot deduce ?cause? from ?effect?.? Read more »


Feed them 1080, that’ll do it

? Boing Boing

On Boing Boing there is a post about how you apparently can’t poison a possum. Which of course is rubbish…we here in New Zealand have got poisoning possums down to a fine and lethal art…they might be immune to snake venom but 1080 knocks them down in their millions:

The common American opossum produces a protein called Lethal Toxin-Neutralizing Factor (LTNF). This protein does pretty much what the name implies?seeking out potentially deadly poisons and neutralizing them. The benefit: Opossums are all-but immune to the venom of poisonous snakes. (Including the venom of snakes native to continents where the common American opossum does not live.) But it gets weirder, as Jason Bittel explains on the BittelMeThis blog:

So they took some rats and injected them with LTNF, then pumped them full of otherwise lethal doses of venom from Thailand cobras, Australian taipans, Brazilian rattlesnakes, scorpions and honeybees. But the rats just laughed in their faces.

?Dude,? said one scientist, ?we have to kill these rats. Do you watch AMC?s Breaking Bad?? The other scientists nodded of course because everybody watches Breaking Bad. So next they tried to kill the rats with ricin, an extremely lethal poison made from castor beans. (How lethal? Just ask Georgi Markov, the real-life Bulgarian defector killed by a ricin umbrella gun. That?s right, I said ricin umbrella gun.)

Alas, the ricin was a no-go. The now-snooty rats danced Ring Around the Rosie.

?That?s it!? screeched the lead scientist. ?It?s time to release the botulinum toxin. Surely this will conquer the awkward opossum?s super serum!? But after many maniacal laughs and a few bolts of lightning, the rats were still alive.

(The paper does not mention what became of the super rats. I can only assume they went on to write ?The Secret of Nimh? while the evil scientists lost their rat-killing grant.)


Bush treads where Clark fears to go

Dalai Lama honor stokes U.S.-Chinese tensions – CNN.com

George W. Bush has today awarded the Dalai Lama with a Congressional Gold Medal. The CGM is the America’s highest civilian honor and now by giving it to the Dalai Lama, George Bush has seriously pissed off the Chinese.

Good Job.

Remember this is the person Helen Clark “couldn’t” meet officially in case the poor widdle Chinese got upset. She should take a leaf our of W’s book.
[quote] “Americans cannot look to the plight of the religiously oppressed and close our eyes or turn away,” Bush said.

Calling the Dalai Lama a “universal symbol of peace and tolerance, a shepherd to the faithful and a keeper of the flame for his people,”[/quote]

Peace and tolerance except from China and Clark.

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China continues to meddle in our Democracy

So the Chinese are at their meddling again. Here's a suggestion to the Chinese. Fuck off! We live ina democracy and we can meet whomever we please and say whatever we want.

Helen Clark is of course a big girls blouse and had a "chance" meeting at the airport. God she is appalling.

On another note I saw a letter to the editor in the local Sunday paper.

[quote]Who does China think they are? They don't dictate our foreign policy.

America does.[/quote]?

China should try a novel experiment, it is called democracy and freedom of speech, not interested? Didn't think so. Now shut the fuck up.