Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving to Mikeb302000 Readers;
Right Wing Extremists, Wrong Again!
This time about Turkey!

Even when we give you a rough time, we are thankful for all of you who read or comment here.  I'm  grateful to MikeB for inviting me to join his blog earlier this year, and for the writing of my co-bloggers.  It was a pleasure to be asked, and it is a special pleasure to have Laci and Democommie join after me. (Wow, MikeB, 2011 has been  a BIG expansion year for you!)

So here is a turkey topic post, to go along with the bird on your respective dinner tables --- and all those other side dishes. 

Wishing you all a safe and happy Holiday with those you love (but not more of them than you can stand, LOL).

I find Pamela Geller and the Islamaphobes on the right like her to be ignorant and inaccurate.  So I was unimpressed when I heard that Geller was waging an anti-Islam campaign against Butterball Turkeys.  Minnesota is an Ag state; it was a Minnesota Turkey that President Obama pardoned this year.  We take our turkeys seriously in these parts, good 'Merikan turkeys.  Between the wild geese, and the wild turkeys, pheasants, ducks, and other wild fowl around where I live, in addition to the domestic variety, we are practically hip deep in edible birds of all varieties.

Promoting an hysterical fear and hatred for Islam is a significant effort by the right, including covert funding by the big money on the right to keep people good and scared.  It makes Islam and terrorism a good wedge issue for the right manipulators, to frighten their base into voting the way they want them to vote.

Here is one of the initial sources for the story about Geller's ridiculous claims, one that clearly, she didnt do the minimum research to verify before making a big noise.  Given her penchant for doing that, there has to be an element of self-promotion in this, a desire to gain attention for herself, not just a concern for the topic. ( I had a rip-roaring good laugh at any publication that gives Geller credence being called 'The American Thinker', because the people who believe this crap are anything BUT thinkers; they're ignorant, bigoted idiots.):

From the New York Magazine (Geller is based in NY):

Halal Turkeys Are Tainting Thanksgiving, Says Pamela Geller

The Internet's most visible hater of Islam, Pamela Geller, is warning all Americans this Thanksgiving about a dastardly new force that's threatening the freedom of our holiday dinner tables: Butterball turkeys. According to Geller, in a column from The American Thinker, the turkey brand is forcing sharia law onto all of us by offering whole turkeys that are "certified halal." Geller is aghast: "In a little-known strike against freedom, yet again, we are being forced into consuming meat slaughtered by means of a torturous method: Islamic slaughter." Yet again!
Geller has the background, in her typically measured tone:
Halal slaughter involves cutting the trachea, the esophagus, and the jugular vein, and letting the blood drain out while saying "Bismillah allahu akbar" — in the name of Allah the greatest. Many people refuse to eat it on religious grounds. Many Christians, Hindus or Sikhs and Jews find it offensive to eat meat slaughtered according to Islamic ritual (although observant Jews are less likely to be exposed to such meat, because they eat kosher).
While Geller attempts to rally the PETA folks to her side by calling the practice crueler than normal, another more neutral take contends that halal slaughter "differs from turkeys which are slaughtered in traditional turkey farms or plants in the United States, where turkeys are kept in cramped conditions and slaughtered in a sort of assembly line by machinery which many find to be inhumane."
Geller will not be convinced otherwise: "It's Islamic supremacism on the march, yet again," she promises. (Yet again!!) "So this Thanksgiving, fight for your freedom." Her "Boycott Butterball Turkey" group on Facebook currently boasts 1,078 "likes," and comments like, "Liberal Fascists are indoctrinated to hate whites, Jews, America, Americans, Free Markets, Christians, history, economics, numbers, and facts." Liberal fascists, however, love Butterball.

Then we have this Youtube bit of Geller and her right wing interviewer spewing this crap over the airwaves; what they are saying is not, in point of fact, correct in any measure:

In counterpoint to the inaccuracies, we have this to enlighten our readers from the dark dysinformation and propaganda on the right.  Screeds of inaccuracy like those typical of Geller and others provokes me to wonder why it is that Geller, and those who run with her crap, like Andrew Breitbart, hate America.  Or in this case, they certainly hate an American Corporation at least, one that employs a LOT of people and does a lot of business here in the U.S., and world wide.

From the Butterball Corporation website, here is the ACCURATE description of their business:

Corporate Information

As the most recognized name in turkey, the Butterball brand represents more than 50 years of cherished memories with consumers globally. Our retail, deli, and foodservice products are distributed throughout the United States and in more than 20 countries worldwide. The tradition of providing top-quality, great-tasting products that make meals something to celebrate every day has made our brand an American favorite.

Headquartered in Garner, NC, Butterball is the largest producer of turkey products in the United States. The company’s three-pronged approach to focuses on self-governance, sustainability, and

social responsibility. The initiative plays a key role in providing internal oversight for integrating values that are important to the company.

and here, from the facts page of Butterball:

Corporate Information - Facts

  • Butterball is the largest vertically integrated turkey producer in the United States and accounts for 20 percent of total turkey production in this country.

  • The Butterball Turkey Talk Line® opened in 1981 and handled more than 10,000 consumer calls that year. Today, the line receives more than 100,000 callers during the Thanksgiving season.

  • Butterball employs 5,500 associates in its six plant locations and corporate offices.

  • At 675,000 square feet, the Butterball plant in Mt. Olive, NC, is the world’s largest turkey plant.
and Kudos to the Rachel Maddow show, for fact checking Ms. Geller: 

There was a good price for the holidays on Butterball turkeys at our local grocery stores; I may just have to rush out to buy a couple of extras, to keep in the freezer, for other holiday entertaining - and to be a good American, by buying American, in pushback against the bigotry and hatred and just plain bloody-minded chronic inaccuracy of people like Ms. Geller. 

I'm thankful that I get so many opportunities to correct the misinformation of conservatives, who would otherwise apparently believe this nonsense, unquestioningly and without critical thinking or factchecking, from the brief glance at the search engine results. ( I think my favorites were the titles indicating that Butterball Turkeys were 'sacrficed to Idols!!!!!!! Oh NOOoooooooooooh!')
But for now, back to the kitchen! 

Happy Hallalidays!


  1. The slaughtering technique is basically the same as with kosher meat, although I don't know if halal meat has to have the blood removed. I suppose a prayer in Arabic adds a particular flavor.

    Since Judaism, Christianity, and Islam derive from the same source and worship the same god, more or less, we learn one lesson from this:

    The bloodiest battles are within the family.

  2. Halal, kosher, and non-religious US regulations all require that the blood be drained from slaughtered animals.

    There is no 'bloodiest battle within the family' here; there is simply more bullshit from the manipulative factually inaccurate right wing.

  3. ALL slaughter practices are cruel. That's it. To say that one that may or may not instantly render an animal unconcious is better or worse is hairsplitting of a truly talmudic variety.

    Pamela Geller is a hatefilled KKKrazzeepants asshat. She's constantly (and incorrectly) ranting about the dangers of MurKKKin Islamification.

    Anyone that takes her word on anything is an idiot--there's really no other way to look at it.

  4. Now, Democommie, weren't you going on about yearning for a pig product? So you don't mind a little cruelty?

  5. Greg Camp:

    WTF makes you think that I'm unaware of the fact that I live in a world where cruelty happens?

    You do know that one of the gunzloonz favorite items for guilt tripping sane people is to say that if we eat meat and don't kill it ourselves that we're being hypocrites, right? Well, guess what, genius? If we all hunted there wouldn't be ANY game animals in fairly short order. Until a way is devised to get everyone off of the meat habit (and survive for more than a few years) we will be eating meat.

    Are you actually worried more about the slaughter of livestock than you are about, say, four young people who got shot in the head by some idiot with hurt feelinz and teh gunz?

  6. The only thing stupider than Geller's idiotic piece was you making a big deal out of it and posting it. She's a nut, no doubt about it; but in fairness, if you think the people that read this nonsense at the American Thinker are some sort of 'extremists' I suggest you read the comments that followed the piece at the American Thinker site.

  7. It isn't only the American Thinker that promoted Geller and her idea. Breitbart ran with it. Use any search engine of your choice; plenty of people on the right made an issue out of it.

    Islamophobia is cultivated by the right to agitate and motivate the base, as a key issue to get them to act. Gay marriage isn't the hot button that it once was; they've cried wolf too often, and it does't work very well anymore.

    For that reason alone, it merited being covered here. Islamophobia is something that is ginned up over and over, by the likes of Beck, and too many others to name.

    It is the right wing 'boogeyman de jour'. The birther conspiracy is still hot in a few pockets of deliberate ignorance, mostly in the South. But absent that the right had to manufacture a fresh conspiracy to be the red meat - or is it the white meant or dark meat, given this turkey of a lie?

    That people on the right believe this crap is too evident in the positions of the current crop of GOP presidential losers as well. "None of the above" is faring consistently better than any of the names. But playing to this Islamophobia and falsifying crap about sharia law is big political manipulation business.

    So, NO, Anonymous, it was perfectly appropriate to write abou it here. I can see how Geller is an embarassment - but really she is no worse than Bachmann or Cain or Gingrich or many of the other nut jobs who lie through their teeth.

    Hah! I wonder if Bachmann will be on the Sunday morning talk circuit, using this story as a talking point?

  8. It was you who posted the link to the American Thinker. None of the commentators there fell for this bunch of idiocy. I'm certainly not gonna waste my time looking for more of this garbage, but you were free to post the other guy; you chose AT and that is what I'm commenting on.
    Regardless, Happy Thanksgiving.

  9. To me it's all "haram." Reading this post made me even happier to be a vegetarian.