Many years ago I obtained my first e-mail address. I made it firstname.lastname@example.org. That address is now defunct, as eventually it became so well-known by spammers that a vast and overwhelming majority of the mail I received was spam, and much of the rest of it contained attachments with viruses. Some messages had the viruses imbedded.
Coping with that was quite a nuisance that became alleviated to some extent through the efforts of the software industry that never seems to crack down on spammers and hackers but makes all of us buy-in on the virus protection racket. Who can find fault with that? Anti-virus software is a multi-billion dollar business, and why fix what earns so much money?
At any rate, the following comments were put together for reasons explained subsequently.
Of Sheep and People and of my e-mail address
- Group Instinct
- Domestic Relations
- Domestic Violence
- Child Abuse
Ever since I started to use my e-mail address, I now and then had a comment on the first five characters of the address: sheep. The following is an example from a message received in 1997.
PS I take it "sheep" is a word-play on the "Schneider" who shears sheep? Or, is this just a coincidence ? I thought "schneiden" usually referred to cutting/tailoring cloth, and "scheren" to cutting/shearing sheep.
Schneider is the German word for tailor, but it could also be used as the term for cutter (in a literal translation, and usually in a compound noun, such as Glasschneider -- glass cutter)
But, the man who asked the question was almost right. "Sheep" in the address does relate to sheep (the animal), actually, the fact that we produce sheep. We still have a few, but had to down-size extensively after our flock became literally decimated last year through predation by three separate packs of coyotes that came daily for snacks. We lost a good number of ewes and more than four times their number in lambs -- almost our entire profit from the sheep operation in the last year of our operation.
After we decided to sell all except a few lambs for cutting the grass around the yard, I was actually worried for a while that we might lose so many before the next scheduled sale, that it might hardly have been worth it to call the trucker to haul them to the stockyards.
Well, we have a little bit more time now. So, it's a blessing in disguise. Ruth and I are both getting a bit worn out anyway.
We also chose the word sheep for the address because of our activism and the fact that society is as easily conditioned as a flock of sheep. Sheep are much better though and more persistent in their habits. They retain them far better than people do and always have realistic motives for their behaviour, which appears primarily and consistently motivated by greed and personal gratification.
We lately heard frequently about the Bonobos, a species of small chimpanzees living in Africa who appears to be possessed by obsessive-compulsive sexual behaviour, that perhaps being the reason why they never fully developed and never managed to come out of the trees to develop a civilization. Instead, they remained stunted, while they blissfully copulate their brains out. They simply wasted a lot of time devoting their attention to unproductive sexual behaviour. Nevertheless, many feminists would like us to emulate their behaviour, while claiming that post-coital bliss and stupor would be a worth-while goal to achieve, somewhat like an eco-friendly Soma. They seem to forget the little problem of the correlation between that type of behaviour and the lack of being civilized.
[Update 2008 02 28: The Bonobos reality is somewhat
different. When observed in the wild, away from captivity in which
there is little more to do than eat and have sex, Bonobos are not too
different from other chimpanzees. Bonobos in the wild, it can be
argued, don't have sex more often than other chimpanzees do. Most
importantly and counter to feminist propagandistic claims, Bonobos are
violent, perhaps as violent as other Chimpanzees. This link will lead
you to a very interesting article about that and many other misperceptions
regarding the Bonobos, "Swingers
: Bonobos are celebrated as peace-loving, matriarchal, and sexually
liberated. Are they?" by Ian Parker July 30, 2007, The New Yorker.]
There are other implications in the behaviour of the Bonobos and other varieties of chimpanzees whom the feminists would have us emulate and go back to the social standards that prevailed before the rise of civilization. The Scientific American (January 1999 issue, page 97) reports that "Pascal Gagneux and David S. Woodruff of the University of California at San Diego together with Christophe Boesch of the Zoological Institute of the University of Basel [Switzerland]" used DNA tracing to investigate "the mating habits of a group of wild chimpanzees in the Taο Forest of Ivory Coast. . . . By comparing the
DNA fingerprints of the adult males and females of the group with those of 13 offspring, Gagneux, Woodruff and Boesch found that seven of the babies could not have been fathered by males in the group."
That's an illegitimacy rate of more than 50% with respect to the gene pool present in the group of chimpanzees that these researchers studied, not to say anything about the extent of promiscuity of the females within that group in relation to their ostensible mates (chimpanzees don't practice monogamy). From the account given of the researchers' findings it appears that the adult females in the study group were quite sneaky about their "trysts" and must have used stealth during the night to see their "extramarital" lovers. The authors of the article, E. Richard Moxon and Christopher Wills, explain that behaviour like that might explain why even small groups of chimpanzees maintain a great deal of genetic diversity, with the preservation of such variety being essential to the survival of wild chimpanzee populations. (Scientific American, January 1999, p. 97)
It is interesting that it is the females who sneak off to have their trysts to follow their biological need for genetic diversification and dispersion in their offspring. The preservation of genetic diversity played an important role in the social habits of the Eskimos and other isolated communities of northern natives of Canada. They exercised the practice of providing visiting men from distant tribes or communities with local women. That practice has become diminished to a considerable extent ever since the advent of Christianity in these communities. In consequence, strongly localized genetic aberrations made their appearance. Some of these genetic aberrations, enhanced through the inbreeding forced upon extremely small communities that have insufficient genetic diversity to maintain viability, are distinctly European in origin.
It appears that the remnants of the biological need for genetic variety in small isolated communities may be a biological necessity that drives social behaviour in communities that no longer need to worry about deliberately bringing it about. On the basis of investigations in a community in England, another one in Canada, and based on the results of tissue matching for organ transplants in supposedly monogamous, stable families, it was found that on average one in five children in such marriages are not the biological offspring of their
ostensible natural fathers. It is obvious, civilization was far from totally successful in regulating, guaranteeing and controlling paternity through matrimony, although jurisprudence increasingly grasps at straws to assign "fathers" to children, with little regard to marital or biological status of paternity.
At any rate, Ruth and I never managed to go to far-off places to study the Bonobos in attempts to contrive from their behaviour reasons for establishing new moral standards in society, such as the exhaustive variety of sexual behaviour displayed in the study population of the Bonobos. We did, however, have occasion to observe sexual and social behaviour of another species of animals, the sheep that we lived for and who lived on our farm. We learned quite a bit from our sheep. But, rather than to suggest that humans should emulate the Bonobos and swing in the trees again, or rather than to suggest that humans should emulate sheep instead of emulating the Bonobos in some far-off African jungle, I would like to simply recount some of the things in which man and sheep are alike, and some of those in which they differ.
* The modern re-engineering of humanity managed
to undo the regulating of human sexuality that it took 10,000 years to bring
to reasonable levels, to the point where some groups of civilized humans
reverted back to and now exceed the extent of promiscuity of primates in the
Six in 10 who take DNA tests in Wales turn out not to be fathers
Wales News - News - WalesOnline,
ALMOST six out of 10 Welsh men who take a paternity test turn out not to
be the biological father....(Full
Sheep are animals that are without exception dominated by a group instinct. They do everything together, when one eats they all eat, when one drinks they all drink, and when one lays down to chew its cud they all do. When one panics, all of them panic, unlike humans where that can only be said to be true of a majority of anyone group. However, just like humans, sheep are easily fooled. When they are fooled all of them are fooled.
An interesting peculiarity that we discovered was that it is actually the ewes who actively pursue the ram to give themselves an opportunity to be bred. That fact made it necessary for us to arrange the corrals in our yard so that the boards were nailed to the side of the fence
posts on which the ewes spent their time eating and socializing. Otherwise they would actually push the boards off to get to the rams and mess up our breeding program. So much for the passive sexuality of the females, eh?
The mating behaviour of teen-aged girls (and even of fully grown adult women) appears to be much the same as that of ewes, although the feminists claim that it is all the fault of the men and boys. By the way, cattle display basically the same behaviour. All domesticated mammals apparently do, except humans they say. But then it is questionable from my observations whether that is true, or if it isn't, whether people are truly domesticated. What do you think? If you should have any doubts about that, spend a few hours in a mall where teenagers hang out and observe their mating behaviour. Honestly, I could swear that they behave like sheep in clothing. I can tell without making any mistakes what sheep-like mating behaviour looks like, regardless of how it is dressed up.
I've got to do this right and give this part of my musings equitable and politically-correct treatment. The comparison of the mating behaviours must also include one of men and beast. Rams, unlike men, have it really good in that respect. They know when a ewe is ready and when the time is right. They constantly check out the ewes for breeding readiness, much like men do who are table-hopping in a bar, although these days it seems to be more likely that women pursue that activity. Signals are exchanged between each ewe and the ram when he checks her out. When she is at the right moment, she'll let him know in no mistaken terms. She'll stand for him to be mounted, always! The ewe simply would not think to turn away and say: "Not now dear. I've got a headache."
That and the idea that the ram could easily have an endless row of opportunities could make many a man envious. Not so fast! Each ewe has an 80% chance of being impregnated when she is bred. Once she has been successfully bred, that's it! There's no more copulating after that until the breeding season in the following year.
We gave our ewes three chances, three cycles of 17 days, and if they weren't bred after that, they went. We shipped them out. So, on average the rams had it good for about seven to eight weeks each year. After that they had to abstain, which wasn't too hard for them because, just like the ewes, they are seasonal breeders, unlike humans, men and women alike (except some feminists who like to abstain permanently), who normally like to do it all year around.
The shepherd wants that the lambing period will be over as quickly as possible. That means exposing the ewes to the ram for a maximum of 51 days during any year. The rest of the year the rams and the ewes are by force chaste, through force of nature and man. What lessens their bad feelings in that respect a bit is the fact, as I already mentioned, that they are seasonal breeders, like deer and like the members of the deer family they are, and that they are at the peak of their libido during September to early January.
There is one major difference in the breeding behaviour of man and beast. Animals only copulate when the females are in estrus, but when that time comes there is no holding them back. We have never had to eliminate frigid ewes from the flock, only sterile ones they always all got themselves bred when they cycled (we use paint markers on the rams; the paint rubs off on the ewes; thereby we can can tell who did and who didn't engage in breeding activities, while humans are usually immune from detection, unless something unforeseen and unhoped-for should happen to them). That caused some frustration for us, because we would not find out about barren ewes until about 147 days they were bred, but we only experienced less than ten of them in a total of a few-thousand ewes over a twenty-year interval. To avoid that problem we expose the ewes to the rams for three cycles and assume that when a ewe comes into estrus for a third time, she will not be bringing us any lambs. Then she'll be sold.
Infant sheep do engage in sex play. It is quite a large part of their routines used in play. The ram lambs do perhaps a bit more of the mounting than the ewe lambs, but they have no preference for the sex of the lamb they mount. Penetration is not possible, because they can't produce an erection at a young age. They truly consider it play and just go through the motion of mounting. And let there be no mistake, ewe lambs and ram lambs alike love to engage in that mounting game, indiscriminately, as active and passive participants.
Sheep have neither marriages nor divorces, nor do they have any conjugal loyalty, unlike humans, who at least pretend at times that partners are true to each other. All that matters to sheep in that respect is to breed and to be bred. It would not really be to any advantage to the ewes to have marital bonds. They are taken care of one way or another. Child support can't become an incentive for them. If sheep in the wild have any social mechanisms to prevent inbreeding or incest, that got lost a long time ago in domesticated sheep. The only one who can exercise any control over that and prevent it is the man in charge of the flock, the shepherd. Any such controls for the safe-guarding of general humanitarian moral standards in human society through the intervention of the equivalent institution, the judiciary, have long ago been lost in human society.
Shared parenting has to my knowledge never been observed in sheep. The rams don't become involved in any parental duties or enjoyment of fatherhood, contrary to what gay-activist-controlled Disney would have us believe. The rams are truly nothing more than donators of sperm and instruments for insemination; sort of what some lesbians use, like turkey basters on four legs.
Don't look for anything in the way of rams in the role of protectors. They simply don't care, no more than a turkey baster does. If any protecting is done, it's done by the ewes. However, there isn't anything noble or indicative of self-sacrifice in the protecting that sheep do. It's all about self-protection when they are in a herd.
If a predator attacks a flock of sheep in the open pasture it is frustrating for us to see, but also very interesting. The ewes will crowd together into a tight mass that will be in a circular motion. While the whole group of ewes mills around like that, the strong and heavy ewes manage to work themselves into the centre of the herd, with the weakest animals, the lambs and their mothers, being left on the outside. Those lambs and some of their weaker mothers will then be picked off by the predators.
That is very much like similar situations in human society. The big strong ewes are most likely to be ewes that have no lambs or at most one. Most of the weaker ewes will be the productive mothers whose lambs, of course, will cling closely to their mothers at the periphery of the milling crowd that safely surrounds the few fat strong ewes at the centre of the flock whenever a threat comes about. It is these weaker ewes and their lambs at the periphery who'll have to bear the brunt of any attack on the whole group. Just like weak women in society, the weak ewes do not benefit at all from the protection that they offer to the fat ewes safely ensconced at the centre of the milling flock.
That always reminds me of the herd mechanisms at work in women's issues with respect to the few feminists in our society who ostensibly work for the benefit of all women and who rake in fat salaries while safely ensconced in women's health centres, battered women's shelters, women's ministries, Status of Women offices or any other institutions that ostensibly serve to protect the common masses of women from the depredations of the institution of the family.
While these few privileged, mostly childless women from the upper- and upper middle classes of society plot their strategies for the destruction of our families and society in their plush offices, the majority of women who are the child bearers in an attempt to secure the survival of civilization and the species suffer the consequences at the periphery. Ever-increasing numbers of these weaker women who were being coaxed from the protection of warm and loving families find themselves in poverty. They struggle with the difficult task of being parents who mistakenly thought that they would have it all and find themselves now having to do it all, by themselves, and often relying on welfare handouts for which the funds are rapidly being depleted.
Domestic violence in sheep is a reality. I always wonder why it is that when we see sheep butting each other on TV it is always the rams who are involved in that activity. I suspect that it is a conspiracy by gay-rights activists and feminist propagandists that keeps the truth from us about that, too. The truth is that ewes fight too, far more often than rams do. They fight bitterly and hard! Often more than two are involved in an all-out brawl. Not only that. They are mean about it and relentless, often carrying on with their animosity for so long that we were forced to cull some of them and send them into exile. They have no compunction about fighting dirty and often butt each other in the gut! We found that when they butt, they often use sneak-attacks and do it without any warning to the victim. In that respect, ewes are very much like women when the latter attack policemen after those come calling to investigate reports of domestic violence incidents. That's something the rams never do! They make a ritual out of the process of fighting and are virtually always fair about their rules. They seem like men when they make formal declarations of war before engaging in hostilities, or, if they do it in private, when they challenge each other to get the opponent to knock a chip of their shoulder or when they slap their opponents lightly on the face to challenge them before they join in formal combat.
Nevertheless, overall, ewes are the more violent ones, not only with respect to violence against their children but even with respect to mutual violence between adult ewes, much like in human society, where the households experiencing the highest
number of incidents of domestic violence are those of lesbian women. If an adult sheep is involved in inter-gender violence, it most often involves a mother and an offspring that she considers not her own, and with same-gender violence between ewes being a distant second.
Rams, too, are quite like humans in that respect. They never attack or hurt their offspring, much like real dads in that respect, at the very least not until their offspring are fully grown and worthy opponents, and never unless they are challenged.
Often I wish that people would be more like sheep in one aspect of domestic violence. We never observed inter-spousal violence between opposite sexes in sheep. Not once have we ever seen a ewe attack a ram, and, of course, the rams just wouldn't dream of attacking a ewe.
Child abuse and neglect by sheep is called
mismothering. It is far more common in sheep than anyone would expect, just like in humans. However, unlike humans, with sheep it is possible to eliminate that trait from a flock through aggressive culling -- by selling off both mother and daughter -- because daughters from bad mothers in turn have an 80% likelihood of being bad mothers themselves (who often deliberately kill their babies, again just like in humans, although, to give them credit in that respect, ewes never demand voluntary abortions). Ewes are extremely reluctant to adopt strange babies. Orphans are best taken care of by bottle-feeding them in foster homes run by humans. On the other hand, expecting ewes that are within hours of lambing steal another ewe's lamb if that ewe is too busy with the delivery of her second or third one. That is the main reason why during lambing time ewes must be watched 24 hours around the clock. I suspect if that were to be done with humans (surprising results were found when that was done through covert video surveillance), fewer human babies would be stolen, and most definitely far fewer would be killed.
With respect to the severity of violence against infants, it does not matter whether the infant truly
is a strange lamb or whether the ewe just thinks that it is a strange lamb. However, when such violence occurs, infants of both sexes are equally likely to be at the receiving end of it -- very unlike what happens with human infants and their mothers. In humans, boys are almost twice as likely than girls to be the victims of violence by their mothers.
However, we never observed any single ewe to develop any animosity towards any of her offspring once she assumed the
sacred duty of motherhood. Once they do that, they are devout, doting and loving mothers until their breeding cycle demands of them to prepare themselves to become ready for the next breeding season. In that respect, ewes appear to be considerably different from human mothers, who often become a nemesis of their children and frequently inflict upon the latter a life-time of suffering, regardless of whether such malicious human mothers are in season or not.
Unlike in humans, where
natural fathers are one-ninth as likely as biological mothers to kill their offspring, we never once had a ram that killed any of his descendants, although we once had a triad of rams that butted each other so aggressively that one of them got some of his ribs broken and died of the consequences. That was primarily my fault. I had wanted to improve the quality of the wool in our flock and bought a Finn-sheep ram. That breed is finely boned and considerably less in weight than the other breeds that we were using. He wanted in on the scrap and got a fatal licking. That was after he had done all of the breeding he was supposed to do. At least we still had the benefit of his genes after he departed. In that respect, just like any disfranchised father, he had done his job and donated his sperm, so that, although we would have liked to have him around for another two or three years, his loss wasn't that important in the scheme of things. Other rams took his place. Just as in humans in modern society, that father was of little consequence in the subsequent life of the children he helped to be conceived. That is the nature of sheep. We now consider that to be desirable in humans as well. At least that's what the feminist sociologists tell us.
Although it is claimed that homosexuality is natural with humans, it isn't with sheep. Not once did we observe homosexual activities in sheep when heterosexual opportunities for copulating were available for them, except for such behaviour in single-sex groups who were prevented from heterosexual contact. Amongst adult animals, once they had experienced heterosexual copulation, they would never revert to homosexual behaviour, even though for most of the year they were in single-sex groups. Quite a departure from the behaviour of homosexual humans, isn't it?
It is not possible to be wrong about that. With sheep you know! They definitely don't have any closets to hide in. With them it's all out in the open. They are honest and at the same time have no scruples other than a slight reluctance to eat very close to where they have defecated (and in that their habits are quite removed from those of some homosexuals). And you know what? I can't really say that either one of us ever did observe lesbianism in ewes, unless one considers the ewes' imitation of the rams' fighting ritual as evidence of that.
If that's the case, then one would have to consider all ewes to show lesbian tendencies to varying degrees when they come into heat and no ram is present. However, one would also have to admit then that, because of the absence of such fighting behaviour when ewes are either pregnant, nursing lambs, or in the company of a ram, they have a distinct preference for real sexual contact over the fake kind, just like the rams do.
And what is wrong with that? Consider that the main purpose of a sheep is to produce another sheep. Just like humans, they are built for propagating and nothing else. There is no way that anyone can deny biological requirements, not even humans, regardless of how sheepish they might act. That is the master plan!
Let's assume that the claim by some "researchers" of a homosexual gene in humans is correct. Maybe there is a genetic disposition towards homosexuality in some humans. That would make humans distinctively different from sheep in that respect.
Could there be a hidden agenda for the experiments in Scotland, where they achieved to combine human genes with those of a sheep to produce what could be thought to be technically a human-sheep hybrid, although that would not be quite correct if a full human chromosome was not used in the experiment? I always was suspicious of the motivations of shepherds who would prefer a kilt to a pair of trousers equipped with zippers -- the absence of noise, you know? [It seems that we'll have to fear nothing yet. Other researchers reported since then that they failed to duplicate the results of the Scottish experiments and therefore were unable to verify the accuracy of the Scottish claims. 1998 10 07 --WHS]
Could the agenda be that either the researchers in Scotland are trying to produce homosexual sheep, or that they are trying to eradicate the "genetic disposition towards homosexuality" in humans, by introducing a superior gene into the human gene-pool? If the latter is true, do they really think that it is possible to make people even more like sheep than they presently are? After all of the hype about Lady Diana, who, suddenly elevated to the status of a saintly woman, was mourned by millions of sheepish people (polished pedestal, and all flaws actively ignored), it seems hardly possible to achieve such a goal. Nevertheless, there are a few characteristics of sheep that, if they could be transferred to humans, would, oddly, make humans not more sheepish but, rather, more humane.
Count your sheep, don't let the coyotes or the neighbour's dogs get them, and good night.
Walter H. Schneider, 1997 11 14 and 1998 10 07
PS. Please, don't send me any jokes about sheep. I don't want to issue a challenge here, but there would be extremely few that I haven't heard yet. (Don't give me any BS about anything I stated in this article. I'm familiar with BS and SS and can quite well tell the difference between the two.)