vegansaurus!

12/31/2011

St. Louis cats need a new home!  »

Hello, animal-lovers in Missouri or willing to drive to St. Louis. Please consider adopting 7-year-old Micro or 7-year-old Confetti.

To make a long story short, a friend’s mom has four cats, but she needs to get rid of these two. The family wanted to put the cats down and still will if they can’t find a home within a few weeks, so these kitties really need your love. I spent a lot of time with these cats when I was in college and can’t bear the thought that their lives could be cut short.

Confetti (above) is a shorthair calico female who gets along well with other pets, humans, children, and probably aliens. She’s kind of fat but likes to play and show affection. But she doesn’t have her shots, so she’s in need of some extra TLC. Her favorite sound is an electric can opener.

Micro (above) is a social, friendly black cat with medium-length hair. When he was a kitten, he was so tiny that he could fit in your hand, hence his name, but he is the opposite of that now, as you can see in the photo. He likes to lie around and lick people and get petted. He is kind of lazy, but it’s adorable. He would do best in a one-pet household as he can become a bully in competing for human attention. His middle name is James, but that’s negotiable.

Want to help? You’re my new favorite person! Email me, and I’ll put you in touch. Give the gift of continued life for these innocent kittehs. Please and thank you!

04/05/2011

The Humane Society of the United States: animal welfare group, or TERRORISTS?  »

[Can’t see the video? Watch it on Vegansaurus.com]

Major lolz but also: Major WTF OMG!

The best part is that this ridiculous video was made by some group called Missouri Farmers Care, which looks suspiciously like A FRONT for big meat and dairy and the industries that support them, like corn and soy. Prime example: they’re funded by one Mr. Dale Ludwig,* the executive director/CEO of the Missouri Soybean Association and the Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council. Hmm, I wonder who has money to lose if animal agriculture slows down in Missouri? Could it be the asshole who is providing all the GMO soy feed?? And get this, “Before coming to the soybean office, Mr. Ludwig worked in the agribusiness marketing and communications industry with Monsanto and Cargill.” Man, this guy is THE WORST. I LOVE that Missouri Farmers Care is ostensibly about protecting and nurturing farmers when this fucker could give two shits about them. He worked for Monsanto! You know, those seed patenting psychos who go after the small-scale, indie farmer on the regular. Oh, and I like how the Twitter feed for Missouri Farmers Care is just a mouthpiece for big beef and dairy. Way to represent the real farmers, you d-bags.

I’m thinking this looks like something that the Vegan Omnivore Alliance should go after, right? Yo, Tom Philpott! What up, homeboy?

In conclusion, if you want to support the Humane Society of the United States because they’re rad and you’re not a psycho, you can buy The Bond, the brand-new book by HSUS President Wayne Pacelle. It’s all about the human-animal bond and all that magical shit. You’ll love it.

*This link wasn’t working on Firefox earlier (Firefox, you’re killing me, bro) so here’s a cached version.

Much additional reporting and many foul words added by Laura!

02/11/2011

Guest post: Vegan in St. Louis: because you might have a connecting flight cancelled here someday  »

As a born-and-raised Midwesterner, I developed a country-mouse inferiority complex at a young age, and like Janice Dickinson before me, I was all “I’M A CELEBRITY, GET ME OUT OF HERE.” So that’s what I did, for a while. Now I’m back, living in my hometown of St. Louis, Mo., and surprise, surprise, vegan food is now almost as ubiquitous here as getting a DWI in the Busch Stadium parking lot. Holla! Here’s a fat-pants-approved guide to eating vegan in St. Louis.

Breakfast

Waking up with an unbearable hangover means the same thing wherever I live: time for cheap-ass vegan brunch. Thankfully, St. Louis is with me on this. On Sundays, Shangri-La Diner offers a rotating brunch buffet including vegan French toast, meat-free brown sugar ham, sausage patties, breakfast potatoes, Southwest tofu scramble, and fresh fruit, and other, less expected dishes, such as vegan green bean casserole. Shangri-La also serves slamming vegan milkshakes, sandwiches, and desserts. A few blocks away, Black Bear Bakery does vegans proud with a similar array of vegan breakfast classics, as well as vegan cookies, cakes, and muffins. At Sweet Art Bakeshop & Art Studio, vegan brunch goes off the rails: breakfast quesadillas packed with potato, roasted red peppers, vegan sausage, and vegan cheese topped with avocado. If you sleep through brunch, stop by Sweet Art for a vegan BLT or any and all of the cafe’s LIKE WHOA vegan cupcakes: Boston cream pie, carrot ginger, red velvet, chai-spice, orange blossom, and more. For a unique vegan brunch, head to Rooster, where vegan Crêpe Suzette is served all week long. Rooster also offers a variety of vegan-friendly crepe inclusions, from oven-dried tomatoes with fresh basil to roasted apples with cinnamon and brown sugar. Keep things real (tipsy) and wash down breakfast at Rooster with mimosas, bloody Marys, beer, or wine.

Lunch
My bottom-line for lunch is simple: inexpensive, no-frills, and filling enough to ride me out until dinner. Pair lunch with a pint of Missouri-brewed beer at Atomic Cowboy, where spicy vegetarian chili sans cheese makes snow in March seem almost charming. Channel your inner Liz Lemon with sandwiches at Foundation Grounds (the Madahoochi layers vegan cheddar cheese, marinated red onion, and spinach) or at the Mud House (the portobello reuben minus Swiss cheese still equals GIMME THAT). Hit up Cheesology for vegan mac ‘n’ cheese, or trek out to Vegadeli, located in Chesterfield, Mo., where rich people serve other rich people vegan burgers, nachos, tacos, and more.

Dinner

Forget about New York City and Chicago, because local chain Pi Pizzeria in St. Louis is where vegan deep-dish pizza IS AT. Even President Obama agrees! The recipe for vegan pizza at Pi is simple: heaps of Daiya vegan cheese and spicy marinara, all the veggies you can stomach, and optional vegan Match Meat toppings. In addition to deep dish, Pi also serves vegan, gluten-free thin crust pizza, salads, and desserts, as well as great happy hour specials.


If you’re not down for pizza, CRAZY, go Midwest-traditional and grab house-brewed beer and a bite at Schlafly Bottleworks, where they serve vegan mac ‘n’ cheese, lasagna, and portobello burgers topped with Teese. For fancier fare, mosey on down the street to Boogaloo for Jamaican Johnny cakes with roasted plantains or yucca mashed potatoes. If you’re in St. Louis during baseball season, check out the veggie chicken and garlic fries at Dizzy’s Diner inside Busch Stadium, or hit up one of the arena’s many concession stands for soft pretzels, peanuts, or beer. Unfortunately, ordering a veggie dog at St. Louis’ famous stadium still isn’t an option—hey, guess what? You’re still in the Midwest.

[Photos, from the top: vegan brunch at Shangri-La; vegan deep-dish pizza at Pi Pizzeria; and portobello burger with soy cheese at Schlafly Bottleworks. This post was written by Liz Miller, who is pretty much the best. She loves champagne, beer, working out with sledgehammers, Arrested Development, 30 Rock, being sassy, and generally tearing shit up. You should try to be her friend because she would totally hate that.]

11/03/2010

Vegans vote 2010: November election results!  »

A mixed bag, you guys. We are really, really happy that Arizonans failed Prop. 109 and that Missourians passed Prop. B; it is pretty depressing that the three other constitutional amendments to guarantee the RIGHT to KILL STUFF passed, and with such high margins; it’s much more depressing that you can still shoot animals in a damn pen in North Dakota. What kind of a jerk are you, you won’t even make an effort to kill an animal like an adult? You are the kind of person who absolutely should not have a hunting license, if you won’t even put yourself in any discomfort or risk missing. Disgusting.

Wag of the finger to your Vegansaurus’ state, whose voters failed Prop. 21 because they hate protected wilderness or something. Extra high-fives to Montana voters for finally getting this initiative passed 20 years after the first attempt. We’re really sad about Nancy Pelosi, you guys. That weepy orange puppet of the tobacco companies is just The Worst and we can’t imagine having to stomach even more of his gross face for the next two years. Happy elections, everyone.

Arizona: Prop. 109 - Failed!
Prop. 110 - Failed.
Prop. 301 - Failed!
With 37 of 39 precincts reporting, Prop. 110 failed by 5,000 votes. Not much! Still, Prop. 109 was much more important, and you clobbered it. Excellent work!

Arkansas: Issue 1 - Passed.
Boo, Arkansas. “Better safe than sorry,” my foot.

California: Prop. 21 - Failed.
It wouldn’t even have affected residents! Dang it, you guys.

Iowa: Measure 1 - Passed!
Good job, Iowans! With a solid percentage, too.

Missouri: Prop. B  - Passed!
This was super-tight, you guys! Fewer than 60,000 votes between passing and failing. You should be so proud of yourselves. How long until it goes into effect?

Montana: I-161 - Passed!
Hey all right. Kill those elk, get that money, Montana.

North Dakota: Measure 2 - Failed.
Back to the shootin’ pen with you, North Dakotan wildlife, so the rich spoiled people can feel good about what skilled “hunters” they are. Cass, Grand Forks, and Sioux Counties: you’re still cool.

Oregon: Measure 76 - Passed!
Nice work. Not sure who would vote against such a gimme, but still, nice work, citizens.

South Carolina: Amendment 1 - Passed.
Oh South Carolina. Passed with nearly 89 percent of the vote. At least North Dakota had the grace to fail the “no more shooting at caged animals” measure at 43.5 percent to 56.5 percent. You all just swept this “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of squirrels with my .22” amendment on through.

Tennessee: Constitutional Amendment - Passed.
You’re the worst, 90 percent of Tennessee voters. Nearly 1.3 million of you all thought, My goodness, you know what we need? The right to bear arms AND use them to shoot bears, in Tennessee, forever. Seriously, was this Basil Marceaux dot com’s scheme? That man does seem to like a gun.

11/02/2010

Your Vegansaurus November 2010 ballot measure voting guide!  »

Have you voted yet today? If not, your Vegansaurus has compiled a list of the animal-rights-related legislation on the ballots this election, with advice on how we would vote on each question along with a brief explanation. The pink dinosaur is a helpful dinosaur.

The pink dinosaur is a politically active dinosaur, too! You had better vote today, friends—your two valid excuses are that you have already voted by absentee ballot, or are prohibited for legal reasons (underage, felon, are actually a very clever non-human animal, etc.). We used Ballotpedia to get the basic information for all the measures; you can also look at your local secretary of state’s site, or google a bit for more comprehensive voting guides. Now: read this, get out, and vote.

Arizona: Prop. 109 - NO!
Why: The Humane Society calls it a “power grab to grab to block future wildlife protection ballot initiatives.” Also we think amending any state’s constitution to add “the right to hunt stuff” sort of cheapens the idea of a constitution (not to mention, hunting is gross).
Prop. 110 - YES!
Why: Would you rather have state trust land secretly sold at massive discounts, or have its use put to a vote, as it belongs to you, the citizens of Arizona?
Prop. 301 - NO!
Why: You don’t want the “leftover” money in your state’s land conservation fund thrown into your general fund, do you? Unless you don’t like public land.

Arkansas: Issue 1 - NO!
Why: This is another proposed state constitutional amendment guaranteeing citizens—of Arkansas this time, duh—the right to hunt. Yuck. Better, the National Rifle Association says that the amendment would give Arkansans the “strongest right to hunt and fish in the United States.” Shut it down.

California: Prop. 21 - YES!
Why: It creates a source of funding for our state parks that doesn’t rely on state funds, which do tend to fluctuate. All the wildlife and nature preservation organizations are for it.

Iowa: Measure 1 - YES!
Why: First, permanent revenue for your state parks, soil and water restoration, and the other lovely projects is good, and it’s supported by nature and wildlife preservation organizations. Second, it’s sort of vaguely opposed by the Iowa Farm Bureau and no one else.

Missouri: Prop. B  - YES!
Why: We’ve mentioned Prop. B a bit; HSUS talks about it much more often; here’s a little article in the NY Times, too. If you don’t vote for the Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act, then you hate puppies, and what kind of person hates puppies?

Montana: I-161 - YES!
Why: Yes it’s odd that your Vegansaurus is advising a “yes” vote on a hunting initiative, but this one is different: It increases the costs of licenses for out-of-state hunters, allows for future adjustment of these costs for inflation, and some of the new income would go to preserving and restoring habitat. If your state allows hunting, why not get something positive out of it?

North Dakota: Measure 2 - YES!
Why: What kind of soulless jerk “hunts” by shooting “big-game” animals in a pen? Sometimes they’re even TAME? Oh right, people like this killer. Anyway, Measure 2 makes it illegal to set it up, profit from it, or do the shooting—what kind of “thrill of the chase” hunting bullshit is it if you aren’t even chasing? Jesus. Please vote “yes.”

Oregon: Measure 76 - YES!
Why: It extends the “15 percent of state lottery profits fund natural resources” plan. No one in Oregon has registered any official arguments against it. So.

South Carolina: Amendment 1 - NO!
Why: This is the third—alphabetically speaking—state constitutional amendment that would make it a right of every South Carolina citizen to hunt and fish. Obviously as vegans we find that disgusting, but as U.S. citizens we find “hunting and fishing” to be significantly less important than, say, “universal suffrage.”

Tennessee: Constitutional Amendment: NO!
Why: How insecure are you in the existing laws that you feel it necessary to amend your state constitution to guarantee your rights to hunt and fish forever and ever? Someday, Arizona, Arkansas, South Carolina, and Tennessee, you’ll look at these amendments with the same chagrin as the nation does the 18th Amendment. Maybe you want to avoid that by not doing any amending in the first place.

10/27/2010

Fallout from Missouri’s puppy mill proposition has already begun!  »

The big election doesn’t happen for six more days, but the threat of Prop. B ending canine slavery in Missouri puppy mills has already shut down some breeders. OK, technically it was a massive investigation by the Humane Society of the United States, but the horrors HSUS revealed is definitely helping the case for Prop. B.

HSUS released its report on Missouri’s worst puppy mills [pdf] on Tuesday, Oct. 5, awarding Mettoville Kennels/”Teacher’s Pets” a Dishonorable Mention for the horrible “treatment”/neglect of their dogs—800 purebred, popular, pedigree dogs that the owners would sell to a broker, who then sold the puppies to our favorite places: pet stores. On Friday, Oct. 1, Teacher’s Pets and another massive puppy mill, Conrad’s Cuddly Canines—not named in the report—announced they were going out of business, and would sell all their stock in a two-day auction on Oct. 29 and 30. Combined, that’s 800 dogs who need homes! Animal rescue groups naturally freaked out; what if other, profitable puppy mills bought up the dogs? Compared to the “Dirty Dozen” the HSUS report focused on, these two prisons were luxury retreats. Obviously the rescue groups had to buy all 800 dogs.

Rescue groups have been working like crazy throughout October to get the funds and foster homes to be able to save all the soon-to-be-homeless dogs and puppies. They’ve arranged for veterinarians to do onsite examinations, innoculations, and spaying or neutering. Still, even if some dogs go for as little as $5, the medical and transportation costs won’t fluctuate, and these groups need help. You can click on any of the following links to donate to various rescue groups, including Something Special Castaways Rescue of Missouri; Paws For a Cause of Minnesota; and multi-state AdoptALab, which is getting extra help from Boston Baked Bonz: the company will match all donations to AdoptALab made before the auction begins on Friday, Oct. 29.

This is super last-minute, which is really annoying; also annoying is how much work it took to find news about this massive dog auction. Three articles about it, total. If you have a few spare dollars, toss them to one of the rescue groups—even $5 could save a dog from going back into a puppy mill, and that’s huge. Not to get too Sally Struthers here, but if your choice is between a beer and saving the life of a dog who has only known misery and pain, maybe forgo the beer this one time?

We’ll let you know the results of the auction as soon as we get them. Cross your fingers all 800 little animals get rescued. Cross some more fingers that Missourians pass Prop. B next week, so no more dogs suffer like these poor articles have.

04/22/2010

04/02/2010

Feral cat controversy, jerks in Missouri, junk in your wine, and MORE in today’s link-o-rama!  »


[image from Lucia Oberste of Zoomie’s Pet Care]

Fun-times vegan-style events!
OK there’s only one this week, and it’s not even 100 percent vegan, but one is better than zero, right? Right! So: Tomorrow, Saturday, Apr. 3 from 5 to 11 p.m. in the Laskie Street parking lot (off Mission Street, between 8th and 9th Streets) in San Francisco you can attend the first Underground Street Food event! The website is a garish nightmare and requires you to subscribe to a mailing list for details, but it might be worth checking out.

Items of social and political import!
It seems like supperclubs in New York are having as much fun and success as they are in San Francisco. Although we are sure none holds a candle to our beloved friends at Brassica.

Ellen, the Humane Society, Halo products and PetFinder.com are sponsoring Stamps to the Rescue campaign, selling first-class stamps with images of adopted shelter animals, and donating 1 million meals to animal shelters.

Salon has a neat little slideshow of five of the “least green” “green foods” campaigns, including those from Sara Lee, Fiji water, McDonald’s, Monsanto, and Syngenta.

So what’s the deal with zoophilia? Is it a legitimate sexual orientation? Can it ever be acceptable behavior?

NATO has decided that hey, we are not as tragically underfunded and pathetic as U.S. public schools, we do not need Pizza Huts, Burger Kings, or Dairy Queens on our bases in Afghanistan any more; our canteens serve the same food, anyway.

Remember the horror that was the Paula Deen dinner party? James Brady Ryan of Pop Torture took it a step further and served only Sandra Lee “semi-homemade” dishes. Yes, it actually does end in vomiting.

Actually homemade: Vegetarian Times has four vegan cheese recipes! I’m making the goat cheese as soon as I get my hands on some cashews—review to come.

Apparently fresh produce carts are not as popular in New York City as the mayor had hoped, or at least not in the areas he would like them to be set up.

Geraldine Baum would like you to know that she buys and wears fur because she’s cold, and because her Russian grandmother said it was a very important status symbol, SO THERE.

There’s a feral cat colony in Daly City that needs feeding a few times a week—please contact Nadine May for more information.

Oh awesome, New Jersey: let’s reclassify feral cats as “exotic” animals so instead of following a successful trap, neuter, release program, we can just try to shoot them to death!

Even more awesome: Brenda Shoss of Kinship Circle organized an email petition of Missouri state legislators, asking them to vote against opening a horse slaughterhouse—currently illegal in the U.S.—and in return many representatives harrassed her.

It’s hard out there for an omni-locavore; “there are a lot of people out there who raise great animals for us to use, and they don’t have the opportunity to get them to us because the slaughterhouses are going away.”

Paul Shapiro of the HSUS is working on a campaign in Ohio for Nov. 2010 similar to California’s 2008 Prop. 2. There’s also a little interview with him in the Mar. 22 issue of Restaurant News.

Even Josh Ozersky, the coolest eating-est dude who ever ate a cool thing, advocates giving up bluefin tuna, lest the species be eaten to extinction.

Watch out for 2008 pinot noirs from the Anderson Valley; winemakers have been using isinglass, “milk byproducts,” and egg whites to alter the extra-smoky flavors left by the wildfires during that year’s grape-growing season.

Should mainstream food writers “disclose” their food preferences, specifically their vegetarianism? The Accidental Hedonist says no.

Pescetarians can ease their consciences with a new U.S.-based “Which Fish to Eat?” guide from GOOD. Hooray.

And eaters of pigs can feel better knowing their pork suppers won’t be made from pigs who cannot walk or stand on their own anymore, or at least not in California.

Why won’t the U.S. government pay for more Plumpy’nut? It’s super-successful, it’s cheap, and it’s vegetarian. What is Plumpy’nut? Basically, magic.

Daz and Chip, two best-friend otters who lived in Nelson, New Zealand, died within an hour of each other this week.

Late addition video to cheer you up! Clever bunny Pallina makes the bed and opens a jar! (link from Cute Overload)

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