Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Hello out there.  Are we freezing yet?  I looked at the thermometer on the outside of our patio door.  It registered about 6 degrees.  The weather people don't expect the temps to break zero tomorrow.  We are supposed to get more snow today.  I told mom this morning that, unless the temps break, what is on the patio will stay right where it is until we absolutely must go out.  With any luck that won't be until next week.  The morning news reader just said that International Falls just set a new record low-- minus 40.  Makes our temps seem absolutely balmy.  I remember a conversation between two professors at Colorado State University I overheard many years ago.  One mentioned that the temps were supposed to go to some (forgotten) ungodly level below zero.  The other said it didn't matter. Once the temps went below zero degrees of cold didn't matter.

As cold and snowy as it is I still can't resist trolling through the container gardening blogs.  As I said before I am planning to use the plastic we have on our windows to construct a cold frame for my tender plants (when I finally get to that point).  Evidently, others have the same idea, including some experts.  This little entry on lists several good methods for protecting plants from frost.  I may even combine a couple of them.  I came to this by way of Kerry Michaels' blog, also on  She suggest a number of very good questions gardeners should ask themselves before getting started.

Nathan Newman at TPM Cafe has a spot-on analysis of a story reported by the Wall Street Journal.  It dredges up a couple parallel thoughts in my tiny mind.  First, is the lengths to which reporters have been going recently to find anything, anything at all, any little thing that might be positive.  Oh, my, companies are reducing their work forces at an increasing rate.  That is bad.  But wait: that means that productivity must be going up.  Great we go with the second part of that and don't mention the first.  Second, my complaint when I read job announcements gushing enthusiastically about their 'fast paced environment' which demands skilled multi-taskers.  I remember giving one interviewer my take on that.  They wanted to roll three jobs into one and pay for the lowest paid position. (I already knew I wasn't going to get that job so why not be honest.)  The third was that  few of the gains from the increased productivity during the recovery from the 2001-2 recession (and I think the one before that) translated into better wages and working conditions for those who made those gains in productivity possible: workers.   If it sounds as if I am very soured on our misanthropic economic system--I am.  I rather think that, if we have a recovery any time soon, it will be a jobless one.  Just like the last one. 

As you may gather, from yesterday's post, nothing depresses me more than the self-righteous idiots who think we should privatize or otherwise eliminate social security.  Today's post at Entitled To Know is a bit more hopeful.  I love the quote from Dean Baker's piece in the Guardian

“The classic definition of ‘chutzpah’ is the kid who kills both of his parents and then begs for mercy because he is an orphan. The Wall Street crew are out to top this. After wrecking the economy with their convoluted finances, and tapping the US Treasury for trillions in bail-out bucks, they now want to cut Social Security and Medicare because we don’t have the money.”

“The attacks are made even worse by the fact that the attackers, people like Robert Rubin and Peter Peterson, promoted policies that led to this collapse and personally profited to the tune of tens or even hundreds of millions of dollars. In other words, after pushing the economy into a severe recession and destroying the life’s savings of tens of millions of working families, the Wall Street crew now wants to take away their Social Security and Medicare. This can almost make killing your parents look like a petty offence.”

The analogy works for me.

That will do for today.  I have a couple of projects and need to get breakfast before getting started.  See you next time.  Try to stay warm and safe.

1 comment:

Kay Dennison said...

So what are those of us who have committed the unpardonable sins of being old and poor supposed to do? Drink psychedelic koolaid at government expense?