Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Good Morning, everyone. We did get some snow yesterday but not much and we did get a bit of sunshine no one predicted. None of the snow stuck around except in very shady places. The weather people predict that the snow we are supposed to get will turn to rain later this afternoon and evening. It will be a sloppy mess that we hope to avoid by getting all our errands done early.

The first story to catch my attention this morning was this one on MSNBC. It struck me for several reasons. Earlier this year one of the Chicago suburbs had a donnybrook that hit the news. A couple of decades ago the state EPA had found high levels of contaminants (including formaldehyde, if I remember correctly.) The city officials claimed they had stopped mixing the well water with Lake Michigan water but were caught in the lie. The question now is--when did they stop and did any residents suffer health problems because of the contamination. But water pollution and supply problems pop up frequently in my reading: in the southwest where uranium mining has contaminated a large part of the ground water which is flowing toward more populated areas and in Wyoming where local groups have been fighting a gold mining company's plans to establish an arsenic leaching operation. And then there was a story on the Nightly News earlier this summer about the small town not too far from the gulf coast where no one has potable water. In fact they can't even use the water for their gardens. Worse the population is too poor to pay the local providers to extend service to them and no government agency was willing to help. It is interesting how many stories on water have popped up over the last year.

Charles Hughes Smith at oftwominds sums up the political/economic state of affairs very well, I think. The political action on the economic problems have, for the past year, have been either a 'sound and fury signifying nothing' or a massive transfer of money to some of the very idiots who put us in this situation. And all we are getting (and are likely to get) is more of the same.


I interrupted this yesterday for our shopping. We are in full winter mode and look at the longer range forecasts to decide which days would be best for shopping given the projections. The predict rain changing to snow for our area although the northern and western counties in Illinois are getting much more snow. Also we are supposed to have high winds and falling temps. So far no snow has accumulated here.

Congress.org has an interesting synopsis of 7 key decisions dating from WWII that have shaped out current health care insurance 'system.' I put the word system in quotes because it is obvious that there is no system here--there is no coordinated, thought out plan of action. Unfortunately, we do have a number of large and powerful entities who have benefitted greatly from our lack of system and they are the key stumbling blocks to reform.

Yesterday I linked to a story about contaminated water and the lack of action on the part of the EPA. Today NPR has a story about a source of contamination not mentioned yesterday--confined animal feeding operations which provide an increasing percentage of our meat and milk in this country. Of course, theNew Mexico dairy industry (the focus of this story) wants to blame the individual owners of the contaminated wells for the problem. But no one really wants to address the underlying problem--too many cows in too small a space. Nor do they even want to begin to address that problem since they don't even want to think about reducing the number of animals or the consequences of that.


Kay Dennison said...

We tot somr hail today and a touch of snow yesterday which reminds me that I have to get out the scrapers and de-icing fluid and pick up a bag of salt.

Why am I so not surprised that Chicago pulled such a stunt and yeah, I'd bet they're lying.

And what's happened to that town on the gulf is a travesty. One would think it's a polace where federal aid would be spent well IF they used it properly and I'm not naive enough believe that a good percentage winds up in some politician or bureaucrat's pocket.

As to healthcare, I am convinced that we will never have decent healthcare as long as lobbyists keep paying our Congressmen. I want lobbyists outlawed, These guys are Robin Hood in reverse: they steal from the poor to give to the rich.

Looking to the Stars said...

We got 6 inches of snow, then the wind started blowing and we ended up with 12 inches in the front yard and driveway. We are very sore tonight :)