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Montana Editorial Roundup | National Post

Missulian, November 28, in Montana, which was supposed to deal with puppy mills:

When the Montana legislature convenes again in January, lawmakers will have another crack in taking action that should have been taken many years ago. This time they must finally take measures to stop the cruel animal breeding operations.

In its present form, Montana has practically no ability to regulate the so-called “puppies” – large-scale livestock breeders, whose inhuman practices often lead to the fact that unhealthy animals are sold to unsuspecting buyers. Unfortunately, Western Montana have witnessed in recent years, in one district after another, too many unscrupulous breeders who have given priority to the care of their animals.

When it comes to the fact that law enforcement agencies must intervene and seize animals, taxpayers are hoping to hook up to cover all the costs associated with feeding and their maintenance, and provide veterinary care.

A bill to pay expenses in Montana will provide some assistance to taxpayers by requiring owners of confiscated animals to place bonds that cover the cost of their care. The Montana County Association recently passed a resolution in support of this.

However, if past legislative sessions are any indication, the proposal faces a tough battle. And this concerns only one side of this common problem.

Lawmakers must collect compassion – if not for animals, then for their taxpayers – to accept this act. But they should also seriously consider banning these abominable breeding operations, known as puppies, that could do a lot to help reduce the cost of retaining captured animals, preventing the animals from being abused in the first place.

Senator Daniel Salomon, R-Ronan, requested a draft bill to consider spending, following in the footsteps of Missoula Tom Sen. Democrat Tom Faithy and Republican Senator Wilsall Nels Svandal, who proposed similar bills in past sessions only to see them shot down – along with previous attempts to attract large-scale nurseries wards. In the most recent session, both representatives: Willis Cardy, D-Misula and Greg Hertz, R-Paulson, offered reasonable bills that would require commercial manufacturers of dogs and cats that work on a large scale to obtain a license and are subject to regular checks, Violators will be fined, and constant offenders will be closed. Both of their bills were killed on the committee.

Any new bills are likely to be met with constant opposition from the Montana Stock Exchange, regardless of how many special exceptions are cut out to convince their members that their industry will not be affected. Remember that most states already have similar laws, including countries like Texas.

Providing poor breeders with the opportunity to stay in business is not only cruel, but also harmful for all good breeders in Montana, whose reputation should not be overshadowed by the horrible stories of sick and hungry cats, dogs, birds and horses. And county taxpayers do not have to come up with thousands of dollars to cover unexpected food and veterinary bills for dozens of poorly processed animals.

Montana law now allows a fine of up to $ 1,000 or imprisonment of up to one year, or both, for religious beliefs regarding animal cruelty. But a $ 1,000 fine would hardly have covered the day care for dozens of animals removed from a single operation.

Last year, Flathead County rescued 37 dogs and four miniature horses from one property. One of the dogs needed to be put to sleep immediately, but the other animals received veterinary care, which they needed to be reinstated in the animal shelter of Flathead County.

The year before, more than 120 animals, including six donkeys, 53 poodles and 60 parrots, were taken from a suspected puppy in Lincoln County.

And a year before this, 130 small dogs were rescued from a puppy in Lake County.

This will continue, and Montanans will continue to pay until our lawmakers seriously stop it.


Bozeman Daily Chronicle, November 27, about George Keremdzhiev and the American Computer Museum:

Back when the American computer museum was still in its infancy at an earlier place, from where it sits, who should cross its threshold, but Neil Armstrong. George Keremdzhiev, who founded the museum with his wife Barbara, took a step forward so that the first person going to the Moon would want to see his growing collection of technological artifacts.

This kind of visitor is known to attract the museum.

Recently Georgy Keremdzhiev died from complications from heart surgery. Although he is gone, his contribution to the preservation of the history of the information age will continue, as will the legacy he will leave here in Bozemann. His museum has become a draw for technophiles around the world. Banquets, which he organized for his George R. Stibitz awards, attracted Apple's associates, who created Steve Wozniak, and famous biologist and author E.O. Wilson.

He was not just the founder of a highly valued museum, and Keremdzhiev was a kind of modern man of the Renaissance, with a love of music and everything scientific. He came to the United States from Venezuela with his parents, who were born at the age of 10, and could not speak English, but continued to graduate classes. He had a successful technical and educational consulting, which gave him the freedom to live where he wanted. To our great happiness, he chose Bozemann.

He did not allow his busy professional life to interfere with his passion – the history of human intercourse. He tirelessly searched for and acquired things, starting from the page from the original Shakespeare's fold and ending with the telegrams transmitted by the generals of the civil war, to the computer for instructions for the Apollo space program.

The modern American computer and robotic museum is not just a tourist stop, it attracts scientists and industrial magnates of the digital age. The museum certainly played a certain role in attracting business and technology professionals to find here and bring a high-paying, clean industry that is the future of Southwest Montana.

After Keremdzhiyev, the museum remained closed for the remainder of this year. But those who have not yet experienced this gem should visit it when it opens again.

Of course, they will be glad that they did.


The Billings Bulletin, November 25, on Montana's flu protection:

The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-1919 killed about 500 million people worldwide and killed up to 50 million people, including 675,000 Americans. In Montana, severe respiratory diseases and associated pneumonia killed about 4,200 people between September 1918 and June 1919, including 254 in Yellowstone, 63 in Rosebud and 118 in Custer.

The pandemic overflowed the only Billings hospital, St. Vincent. In October 1918, the Red Cross created an emergency hospital at Billings High School on North 30th Street and Fourth Avenue North to care for dozens of the worst cases.

“Medical science and public health were not prepared to fight the flood of morbidity and mortality,” said three public health specialists in Montana, who described the effects of the pandemic on our state in the summer edition of the Montana magazine in Western History. . Todd Harwell, Dr. Greg Holtzman and Dr. Stephen Helgerson noted that in 1918 there were many other infectious diseases in Montanas, including 1104 cases of smallpox, 179 cases of typhoid fever, 309 cases of diphtheria and 12,086 cases of measles. Flu reports were not even required until a pandemic hit.

Are we ready to prevent a pandemic now?

A recent event at the Johns Hopkins Health Center found that a flu-like virus epidemic could kill 15 million Americans in one year, according to an article published in the New Zealand New Journal of Medicine on November 7. Author Ron Klein also noted that "it will take about 24 hours for a virus such as the 1918 flu to move from anywhere in the world to Paris or Washington, Beijing or Riyadh."

The threat of a pandemic remains, but medical science has more weapons to fight against it:

– Observation.

– Vaccines.

– Antiviral drugs.

– Antibiotics.

– A strategic national stockpile of influenza vaccines and antiviral medicine that is rapidly spreading during periods of bad flu, such as the 2009 HINI epidemic.

“Now we have a lot of advantages that they didn’t have then. No First World War. They did not know what caused it. We have vaccines and antiviral drugs, ”said Harwell, head of Montana’s public health and safety department in Helen. Harwell, Helgerson and Jim Murphy, head of the Bureau of Infectious Diseases in Montana, spoke about flu prevention in a recent telephone interview with The Gazette.

The virulent influenza strain of 1918 struck young, otherwise healthy adults. By the time the authorities realized that there was a problem, it was a pandemic – a huge global infection.

“One of the biggest things for us right now is a worldwide observation network,” said Murphy. "There is worldwide cooperation to discover something new as soon as possible."

“Last year was a bad season,” said Murphy, “about 80,000 flu-related deaths across the country and 79 in Montana.” "So far, it seems, the right strains are in the vaccine." Last week, 31 cases were confirmed in 11 districts from Missoula to Roosevelt.

“The most important thing on the horizon is the development and implementation of a universal flu vaccine with better coverage for more strains,” said Harwell.

Vaccines are not perfect. First, they must be managed annually. The vaccine is grown in eggs, so production takes about six months. Every year, scientists use data to predict which strains of influenza will be observed during the flu season in October-March. If the prediction is wrong, the vaccine will be less effective and more people will get sick.

Access to the vaccine has improved in recent years, said Stephen Helgerson, a former medical worker in Montana. Many employers now offer flu shots at work. Pharmacies offer flu shots. “We want to make it as convenient as possible,” said Helgerson.

For all the research and knowledge gained over the past century, prevention is still a hard sell. Only about half of Montans receive annual flu shots, although the vaccine is recommended for almost all people over the age of 6 months.

State and federal lawmakers should pay particular attention to prevention. Too often, funding for research, development and prevention of diseases is accompanied by disasters and emergencies, even though life and money could be saved by investing in public health and awareness.

A century ago, many of the leaders of Montana (and their colleagues across the country) minimized or ignored the threat of influenza until people died. If history has taught us something, we need to know that protecting public health is the primary responsibility of our government. Lawmakers do not sell public health.

Dear readers of Gazette, protect yourself by making a flu shot. Protect everyone around you, often wash your hands, sneeze and cough up your sleeve and stay at home if you are sick.

As Helgerson said: “The ability to work together is the key to preventing modern flu epidemics.”


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