Monday and a new week begins

Sparks Of Insanity By Vinny "Bond" Marini Monday, August 23, 2010

Two women with strong voices
Two women from different genres
One just starting out - One with an incredible resume
Join me as I welcome
Annie Fitzgerald and Reba Russell
To The Couch

Been a heck of a two weeks...first my back goes out and then Thursday evening I got hit with a real nasty stomach virus that knocked me out for two days...

But I am back and feeling pretty darn good as I type this Sunday afternoon. I am getting set to head downtown to see my friends Victor Wainwright, Greg Gumpel and Josh Roberts perform some excellent music.

Just another week and Nancy comes home and completes this six weeks of travel...will be wonderful to have her home again.

Wright County Egg and Quality Egg, the two companies involved in the recall of some half a billion eggs are both owned by Austin "Jack" DeCoster and this man and his companies are no stranger to problems with their operations.
  • 1994, the state of Iowa assessed at least four separate penalties against DeCoster Farms for environmental violations, many of them involving hog waste.
  • 1997, DeCoster Egg Farms agreed to pay $2 million in fines to settle citations brought in 1996 for health and safety violations at DeCoster's farm in Turner, Maine. The nation's labor secretary at the time, Robert Reich, said conditions were "as dangerous and oppressive as any sweatshop." Reich's successor, Alexis Herman, called the state of the farms "simply atrocious," citing unguarded machinery, electrical hazards, exposure to harmful bacteria and other unsanitary conditions.
  • 2000, Iowa designated DeCoster a "habitual violator" of environmental regulations for problems that included hog manure runoff into waterways. The label made him subject to increased penalties and prohibited him from building new farms.
  • 2002, the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced a more than $1.5 million settlement of an employment discrimination lawsuit against DeCoster Farms on behalf of Mexican women who reported they were subjected to sexual harassment, including rape, abuse and retaliation by some supervisory workers at DeCoster's Wright County plants.
  • 2007, 51 workers were arrested during an immigration raid at six DeCoster egg farms. His farms had been the subject of at least three previous raids.
  • June 2010, Maine Contract Farming, the successor company to DeCoster Egg Farms, agreed in state court to pay $25,000 in penalties and to make a one-time payment of $100,000 to the Maine Department of Agriculture over animal cruelty allegations that were spurred by a hidden-camera investigation by an animal welfare organization.
Makes you wonder what has to be done before the FDA shuts an operation down for good, doesn't it?

I had to think about whether I had eaten any eggs or egg products before I got sick last week and could not remember doing so...

8 Of Your Sparks

  1. Yeah I had to do an egg inspection this week too. I read about that guy. What a pig!

    Glad you are feeling better =)

  2. DrillerAA09 Says:
  3. It seems that we live in an era when many businesses don't believe that rules, regulations, or good business or safety practices apply to them.
    If BP had paid attention to good practices the Blow-out Preventer would have been fixed weeks before the disaster. If the banks had not tried to make loans available to everyone, regardless of loan history or financial situation, most of this recession could have been avoided. Now, our national debt matches our Gross National Product. Do you see a trend here?

  4. STARR: Yup yup thanks

    DRILLER: A trend...we just do not learn from our mistakes?

  5. Jay Says:
  6. It's Babe Day on the Couch!

    The FDA has so much less authority than people think. We're much more of a "well, corporations can police themselves and be trusted to do the right thing" type of country. ;-)

  7. JAY: That it is Sir..and Babes who can SING
    Maybe we need to make the FDA stronger again then

  8. katherine. Says:
  9. just catchin' up and sayin' hey

  10. ...I'm a big phfan of the cheese and onion omlette...

  11. That's a serious list of violations. I have to agree. What does it take for the FDA to put someone out of business for good?


Music On The Couch