Grateful Dead

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slo lettuce's picture
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Joined: Jul 20 2012
"A question ain't really a question if you know the answer too"

GOP Senator Rob Portman of Ohio changed his personal opinion about same-sex marriage only after his son, Will, came out in 2011.The senator was quoted as saying, "It's a change of heart from a father's point of view." Why didn't he have a father's point of view in the first place and ask himself, "How would I feel about this topic if I knew my son was gay?"

One more changed mind is a good thing, but is this what it takes? Direct personal involvement? Short-sighted people in a place of power is some scary shit!! (stating the obvious)

Instead of galloping off to paid-in-full ivy league educations, what if, directly after deciding to invade a country, all of the "of age" congressional spawn were required to be the first on the front lines? The first to receive IED fragments, the first to take sniper bullets, the first to ferret out the suicide bombers, the first to fill the rooms of Walter Reed and the first body bags to be saluted.

Does - God forbid - an entire congressional family need to be mowed down by some f*@#*ng lunatic with an assault rifle to finally ban assault rifles? An entire classroom full of 6 year old children couldn't do it.

I know the answers; I'm just ranting.

- subject - John Prine "Far from Me"

Mike Edwards's picture
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Joined: Jun 17 2007
One for the Butterflies

Just dropping a post in this new thread so that it comes up in my subscriptions.

Anna rRxia's picture
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Joined: Dec 25 2009
Assault weapons ban dead in the Senate

What we all knew and predicted would happen has happened. No real gun control legislation will pass. Reid told Feinstein, author of the bill with assault weapons ban (and multi-bullet clips) that though she has 22 co-sponsors there are no more than 40 votes in the Senate in favor. They need 60 these days.

Lets hope that a bill passes that closes the gun show loophole. It won't matter for those who already have or are willing to sell guns but it does make a difference for those who shouldn't have them and have paper behind their names saying they shouldn't, like people who are spouse batterers.

After Newtown, how could we not act? The Democratic Governor of Vermont is against an assault weapons ban because hunters are for it and the fad of deer-shooting is waning badly and the Vt. Chamber of Commerce is trying to get more young people into the woods with guns.

Wait a second. Get more young people into the woods with guns?!? (It supposedly turns them into lifetime hunters who will buy guns, bullets, clothes, provisions, motels, alcohol in the state.)

Anna rRxia's picture
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Joined: Dec 25 2009
Syria stretching for pretext to use Chemical weapons

Assad's back is up against the wall. The 10th anniversary of the Iraq war with all those pictures of Husein's haunted face looking out from the spider hole where he was captured must have spooked him. What kind of a megalomaniac actually looks for an excuse to use chemical stockpiles on his own people?

If that happens Obama's word will fill the Syrian sky with flame. Were the chemical stockpiles are, anyway. It's already a promise made.

Anna rRxia's picture
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Joined: Dec 25 2009
Roundup

Breakfast of champions!

Monsanto is not a socially responsible corporation and their Roundup line of products is killing us.

I love the emphasis on organic gardening here in Vermont. I go to the farmer's market every Saturday in season. I very rarely buy very much. The price are very high compared to cheap supermarket produce. I asked one of the organic growers "How can you guarantee to me there is no cross-pollination from GMOs?" His reply to me? "Good question. I can't."

I don't think produce should be priced as a boutique product because it's supposedly "organic". The growers shouldn't charge as much as they can get. Shouldn't the price be based on the absence of paying for pesticides plus the increased cost of labor for weeding? All other expenses are the same.

Well, I can always ride the rural highway and stop at the family farm stands.

slo lettuce's picture
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Joined: Jul 20 2012
monarchy minority...

At my place of work, we grow around 150 species of north american native perennials annually. 3 of those species are native forms of milkweed which constitute an average of 20,000 potted plants; about 6% of all of our plants grown.. I'm always amazed at how the female monarchs will rule out 147 species in twelve greenhouses and can find the only 3 species which will support the development of their eggs. Every summer, as the caterpillars develop, they also devour and defoliate those species as each grow, so three of us with 5 gallon buckets will spend about an hour removing them and then replace them one-by-one on native milkweed plants in a nearby ditch.

The last two years we have grown the same amount of milkweed as usual and have not seen even so much as one monarch caterpillar -- not one.

At the same time, GMO cropland of corn, soybeans and cotton in the US has exploded - as of 2011 - to 135 million acres -- 37% of total US cropland. Native milkweed, the essential ingredient in monarch caterpillar development, is considered a weed in US cropland and is intentionally targeted. There is no substitute plant for milkweed -- it is vital to their life cycle. Diminish a species food supply and you diminish that species population. In 2011,the USDA green-lighted Roundup Ready (GMO) versions of alfalfa, sugar beets and Kentucky bluegrass, all of which will add millions more acres to this practice of growing GMO plants -- good for Monsanto stock prices because farmers who are forced to buy Monsanto seed are also legally required to buy Monsanto brand Roundup and not the cheaper generic versions -- and as we all know in this land of plenty -- hordes of easy money is the only thing that really matters.

"Enjoy 'em while you can" is not too far off. Or enjoy them when you can. Their sightings will be declining in the US in the coming years and you can count on it. I hope to be able to pick the caterpillars this year, but I'm not holding my breath. PBS's documentary on monarch migration is, as usual, outstanding and completely fascinating and a visit to Pacific Grove, Ca. and/or El Rosario, Mexico for the annual monarch festival is on the bucket list. They truly are amazing creatures that add interest and beauty to our existence.

wilfredtjones's picture
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Joined: Jun 4 2007
re: the monarchs

Another dispatch from the land of peaches and cream: I heard that due to habitat loss and pesticide use, the acreage the butterflies cover from point A in the Mexican mountaintops is only 2.9 acres, down from 6 acres last year and down from something like 16 acres only 10 years ago. I'm only paraphrasing the numbers, but they can be gleaned via the google...in other words, enjoy 'em while ya can...

marye's picture
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Joined: May 26 2007
yay Monarchs!

have to check on the scene in Pacific Grove.

Anna rRxia's picture
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Joined: Dec 25 2009
Interesting observation about Iraq's oil

Further implications include an expanding Chinese economy that further leads to uncontrolled global warming. Not to mention the interest on the bonds buying even more oil.

America is counting a Chinese political/sociological implosion based on it's rising GDP and the corresponding disproportionate distribution of that product. Absent that revolution, the world faces a new superpower that doesn't care about the environment. To think that the Iraq war hastened all of that is depressing.

Anna rRxia's picture
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Joined: Dec 25 2009
Did it matter, Does it now?

In the short term it all matters
In the long term not a whit.

Here's to the Monarch butterflies
59% percent still migrating

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