Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Good Wednesday to you all.  Sunny this morning but cool--only in the mid 50s.  I was a bit worried about the patchouli I left in the greenhouse but it looks fine, so far.  I will let things warm up before I do anything more outside.  I need to harvest some of the lemon balm and dry it.  I got the dehydrator out and put where it belongs for the season.  I got the rest of my corn planted, the last of the tomatoes and the stevia in place.  I almost forgot--the first strawberry of the season was fully ripe yesterday and I split it with Mom.  Absolutely delicious!!  Looking forward to more.  I want to get a few more seeds put in here and there, transplant the impatiens into their pot, and throw a bit of fertilizer in various places.

Well, Dick Lugar lost his bid to be the Republican candidate for the Senate.  Mom wondered if we shouldn't have voted in this primary.  Unfortunately, we didn't see much of a choice this time.  If we went in as Republicans it was between Lugar and a Tea Party backed Repthuglican neither of whom we would vote for in the Fall.  Mourdock, the Teapublican, will now face off against Joe Donnelly in November.  He has been in the House of Representatives but we know very little about him.  We have noticed how little we have heard about the primaries--it seems that our elections get less and less attention from our alleged news media.  The same goes for the city races.  Our local papers were folded into two centralized organizations that pretend to cover the entire northwest Indiana area--meaning they give passing mention to the issues of each county or city/town but no complete coverage of any.  The traditional notion of an 'informed citizen/voter' requires two things--information and the education sufficient to understand the information.  It seems to me that we are failing on both counts these days.

Evidently utilities companies in a number of states are facing consumer backlashes against their efforts to push so-called 'smart meters' on their customers.  I find this whole issue offensive on a couple of counts.  Many of these companies want to pass the costs onto the customers while pocketing the savings they are drooling over.  That is entirely a win for the company and a loss for the customers.  And if you would rather not foot the bill for the smart meter they want to be allowed to charge you for the privilege.  Another win for them and loss for us.  But I also wonder about the security for these systems.  I noticed that the mainstream media finally carried a story I have seen on-line for over a week:  hackers trying to get into the computer systems regulating the natural gas pipelines.  What a wonderful way to throw a small wrench into the works simply by corrupting the data so that customers are sent outrageous bills.

I was curious when I saw the title of this article by Christine Todd Whitman.  I am no fan of hers since her usual position is the hard line Republican 'Business uber alles' variety.  I am somewhat sympathetic to the notion that we shouldn't be totally reliant on natural gas--or any other energy source.  However, her solution is not really a solution.  She wants more nuclear.  Nuclear has a couple of problems for me.  First, the problem of the waste is one that I can't see an effective solution to--unless we want to go to the expense and trouble of sending it into the sun by rocket.  And then we had better hope nothing happens on lift off to create an inadvertent 'dirty' bomb.  Yucca Mountain? you say.  Do you really want waste hanging around farther into the future than the Crusades were in the past?  Or the fall of the Roman Empire?  Or the construction of the Pyramids?  And even if we could construct absolutely safe nuclear plant (a practical impossibility) how could we ensure that something external to the plant won't render all of our safety measures null and void?  For anyone stupid enough to think such a thing I have one thought for you: Fukushima Dai-ichi.  And for anyone idiotic enough to think such a system can be safeguarded against human incompetence, idiocy, or folly I have another thought for you: Chernobyl.

1 comment:

Kay Dennison said...

Here's a link you might find interesting about Lugar. It's seems he was better than we thought & MUCH better than the idiot who replaced him,