Happily, I will be contemplating my gardens because I just received the first of my two seed orders. I have to sit down and write up my seed starting schedule and get my shopping list together. We had to go to Menards (one of the local home improvement/lumber yards) and walked by the section the usually set up for gardening supplies. They already have the peat pots, peat plugs, mini-greenhouses (shelf size), and tomato kits, etc. It won't be long before they have the full shelves of seeds and the rest of the gardening section up.
The first story I came across this morning was this one concerning the 'creative' use of statistics by House Republicans hoping to repeal the health care reform laws. I file it under the 'figures don't lie but liars figure' tab. It struck me, not for the first time, that the more we hear talk about 'transparency' the more we wind up wandering in opacity. Isn't it marvelous how the Republicans take a statement which asserts minimal job losses due to workers deciding that they can work less because their health needs are being met outside their jobs to '650,000 jobs lost' with the implication that the job losses are due to employer responses to onerous government demands?
I was amused by the news reports last night because the media suddenly discovered two trends I have been reading about for the last 2 or three months. The first involved the shrinking product packages manufacturers have put out to mask price increases. I have also posted else where on this blog my own experiences with this aggravating phenomenon. I was glad to see the expert interviewed for the story take on the claims manufacturers made that they either had to raise prices or reduce the package--reducing the package is a price increase. The other story concerned the precarious budgets of cities across the country that are forcing some very nasty choices--major cuts in fire and police services. The mayor of one city was quoted as saying that if negotiations with the police union resulted in 'concessions' they might be able to hire back 100 of the 160 police officers they let go. This is another issue I have been reading about for some while now and it will only get worse because the Federal stimulus money, which has mitigated the effects so far, runs out this year.
The link to this story came by way of an e-mail alert from NaturalNews which also announced a boycott of General Mills they want their readers to participate in. I can't participate because some time back we stopped buying the kinds of cereals that sparked their rage and for much the same reason--we couldn't find the fruit they supposedly contained and we didn't want all the sugar and artificial flavorings. We have gone to straight oatmeal or farina (usually getting the generics and not the instant or quick varieties) to which we add dried fruit or nuts when we want them.