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Are caged chickens crazy? Wouldn't you be?

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Where do you get your eggs? The ones you eat for breakfast, or bake in a cake, or heave out of the car window at someone's house on a prank? OK, maybe not that last one. Forget we asked. But still: Have you ever thought about the business of egg production? Yes?

So then, are the chickens that supply those eggs treated little better than slaves lashed together in some sadistic ritual rigged to maximize profits at the expense of ethics and morals, or do you think your daily egg comes from one of those frumpy clay chickens with Yorkshire accents wishing they could fly away in "Chicken Run?"

(Or maybe you don't care, of course, like most folks. But there's a great "your-tax-dollars-at-work" angle here ...)

 

Animal rights activists fall into the first category. And, frankly, we don't know anyone past third grade who thinks there's a shred of reality to the "Chicken Run" scenario. But it's a funny movie right?

Anyway, the point here is that some Iowa scientists are now trying to figure out, in as calm a way as possible, whether or not egg-laying chickens go nuts after being crammed by the nines into cages the size of your average 2-drawer filing cabinet for two years so they can squeeze out the basic ingredients of the huevos rancheros you enjoyed this morning.

Really? We need scientific research for this? Apparently so. And like we said, it's your tax dollars at work.