Good wet Thursday to you all. We had thunderstorms overnight and, from amount of water in a drip pan on the patio table (which was empty yesterday at this time) we received about 2 inches of rain here. I won't get anything done in the gardens today because it is much too wet. I had to retrieve our trash tote--the high winds sent it rolling half a block away. I forgot to bring it in yesterday. All this is coming your way, Kay. I hope it is enough to revive some of the corn, soybean, and other crops that have been suffering under our extremely dry or drought conditions. From what we have seen on line and in broadcast news a fair portion of the crop may be beyond help.
I checked the lemon balm ale yesterday. It is beginning to smell somewhat like beer. Good sign that. I wanted to move the three stevia to the area where that stand of corn I removed yesterday had been. But I will wait until the gardens dry out--probably tomorrow. That will give a few of the other plants a bit more room.
We have seen an increasing number of stories (even if the stories contained no new information) concerning the drought and its potential effects--especially on U.S. food prices. This story from allAfrica.com takes that a step farther. Just yesterday I was wondering what effect our weather conditions might have on things like food aid--to which the U.S. contributes a large amount. Not to mention the fact that shipments of corn, soybeans, wheat and other ag products are a significant part of what we sell abroad. As I said above, I really hope that the rain we are getting is both widespread and supplies enough moisture to put a dent in the dryness and revive some of the crops. By the way, I have harped often enough on the downsides of our global, industrialized (and agriculture as practiced here and in most leading economies is industrialized) economy. Here we have another example of a rippling disaster that has become all too common over the last decade or so in our highly interconnected world.
I thought this was painfully amusing. Mitch Daniels, (not-)soon(-enough) to be our former governor, has indeed been a major proponent of 'privatizing' governmental functions to for-profit companies. I find it amusing that these guys are so committed to the 'gospel' of privatization and so-called small government that they simply don't learn that it more often than not doesn't deliver on either the monetary savings or efficiency promised. Another case where the cost of failure is being born publicly while the profits (what there were) are privatized. I love the Judge's ruling: neither side deserves to win this case.
Two stories are sure to make me turn off the news: anything that pretends to divine where the election is headed and anything about George Zimmerman (or any of the other spectacular legal cases the media flails to oblivion.) Unfortunately I couldn't miss Zimmerman's self-serving and self-righteous interview (with his attorney at his side hanging on his every word). Pam Spaulding at Firedoglake sums up the performance perfectly. His apology was no apology and his remorse totally fake if he wouldn't change anything he did. His notion that the course of events were God's will was ludicrous; they were George Zimmerman's will and no one else's, divine or otherwise. George is engaging in what has become an American sport--evading responsibility and shifting the blame onto someone else.
Here is one for the 'what's old is new again' file.
Robert Reich writes a good bit of sense on our job outsourcing and insourcing. I have said for sometime that our largest American companies (and those of other nations) are American in name only. They are global and have an allegiance only to the bottom line. He has also noted the deficiencies of American education which barely educates anyone anymore but the question I ask whenever anyone writes this is 'who is going to pay for education.' We have an interesting situation up in Chicago as the Mayor and CEO of the school system are at an impasse (for the moment) with the Teacher's Union. The former want to expand the school day (but aren't specifying what they want to fill that time with) and expect the teachers to take on 20% more instructional time while accepting a paltry 2% raise in pay. Ant that doesn't even begin to address all of the concerns the Union has raised. As with so much else in this society everybody wants somebody else to pay. I could go on but you see where this is going. Companies want ready made workers without taking any financial responsibility for the education of those workers. Homeowners want a good school system so their children will have a chance at advancement through education but they don't want to pay the necessary property taxes to ensure it. The Unions are tired of having their pensions looted, their health insurance costs increased and their dedication to their careers questioned when they object to being beggared by minuscule raises that don't keep up with inflation.