• The Republican platform for the last few decades has been "F* the Future", which, sadly for them, is here.

  • comment on a post Hog Hell over 4 years ago

    And don't buy the lie that subsistence farming is a more likely culprit. Consider the 2007 Worldwatch report on avian flu:

    "... Locating large chicken farms near cities might make economic sense, but the close concentration of the birds to densely populated areas can help foster and spread disease, Nierenberg says. In Laos, 42 of the 45 outbreaks of avian flu in the spring of 2004 occurred on factory farms, and 38 were in the capital, Vientiane (the few small farms in the city where outbreaks occurred were located close to commercial operations). In Nigeria, the first cases of avian flu were found in an industrial broiler operation; it spread from that 46,000-bird farm to 30 other factory farms, then quickly to neighboring backyard flocks, forcing already-poor farmers to kill their chickens. ..."

    Also, Charles, the phosphorus supply might get us before peak oil, re production constraints. I'd read that before, forgotten it, and ran across it again yesterday. Good times.

  • comment on a post La Gloria y La Infamia - Globalization and Swine Flu over 4 years ago

    Good stuff. Though if one were to get all hair-splitting, as I did when I wrote about it, one might note that Smithfield's official denial only denied that they had infected hogs. They didn't deny contaminating people's drinking water with hog sewage or breeding a virulent army of flies.

    Though they could just be lying about the hog thing.

  • What part of government by the people do you not get?

  • If you read that sentence, it says that only the deluded believe that Republicans give a damn. If you were to read it, that is. I'm sure that must be hard given that criticism of Obama seems to make your comprehension levels drop.

    But I really don't think it's appropriate to campaign as a champion of something you aren't willing to fight for. Obama should know, because he's a pretty smart guy, that nothing thrills wingnuts like getting these little victories against women and that they always will just ask for more. He likely also knows that there's a long history of Democrats doing exactly this sort of thing, and he's already demonstrating that he'll be rolled on this stuff.

    If he changes his tune later, great. Though any politician deserves pushback on things like this. You don't lay down and shut up just because they're on 'your' side.

  • Local funding of schools is the exact problem. Local governments who don't have the option of going into deficit and who must rely for school funding on local property taxes (take a gander at Detroit real estate some time) are easily crippled when the economy takes a header. If homes in your neighborhood can't even sell at 10k a pop, your kids' school is f*d.

    School funding needs to be done on a national basis, so that the quality of primary education isn't a rigged lottery based on where your parents live.

  • on a comment on Rich Blog, Poor Blog over 5 years ago

    Well, that's really sort of the problem. Too many guys think that if they're not personally titillated by a picture of a woman, it lacks value. Are you entitled to be turned on by every female breast image you see? Is that your right?

    And ... drunken party pictures, vacation photos, while they might in theory be educational or scenic, they usually aren't. The vast quantity of photos I've seen posted up on facebook fit none of these criteria you've listed.

    This childish 'eeew' reaction to breast feeding has real world consequences in terms of making new mothers feel isolated and shunned. All because there are men who find it gross that something they normally enjoy looking at has a baby attached.

    Grow up and get over it.

  • on a comment on Rich Blog, Poor Blog over 5 years ago

    In fact, they made sure to say that no such thing would happen.

  • comment on a post Clinton's State Department over 5 years ago

    The US has always significantly controlled the finances of less powerful countries we interacted with through intermediaries in the World Bank. Why not be more explicit about who's really pulling the strings?

    Anyway, as bruh3 also suggests, economic policy isn't all about domestic palicy.

  • on a comment on Vilsack for Agriculture over 5 years ago

    As Vandana Shiva has explained, the traditional greens displaced by fencerow to fencerow cropping supply more than adequate vitamin A. The solution isn't to put the world on an enriched starch diet, it's to put the world on a balanced diet with more than one source of food. Pulses, fruit, greens, some eggs/meat/fish/milk mixed in, that's the foundational necessity of good nutrition.

    Put another way: You can't add enough vitamins to rice to make up for the fact that it's a bad idea to eat only rice.

    And wild relatives of crop plants are closely enough related that when there's a problem with a crop plant, traditional plant breeding may call for a cross with a wild relative. The differences between most of these varietals are more like the differences between dog breeds than they are like the differences between dogs and cats. Different as they look, you can cross a Dachshund with a St. Bernard.

  • on a comment on A Slight Case of Overblogging over 5 years ago

    How does the actual duty fall on the people who are being treated like sh*t? The duty resides with the people who are being jerks, and their duty in that case is to cut it out. End.

  • on a comment on Senate Mandate Perspective over 5 years ago

    "... no one, anywhere, gives a DAMN what pundits think ..."

    Except elected Democrats. This is what worries me.

  • on a comment on Future of Agriculture over 5 years ago

    If he can at least make a dent, and avoid making things worse, that'd be something. But he did say the environment was a priority, maybe he'll come around to the idea that these issues are important to that goal.

  • on a comment on Future of Agriculture over 5 years ago

    The subsidies are a problem, but not the problem. If they were merely capped, that would be a good enough stopgap for a while. Competition reform is more urgent, and after that, probably tackling restrictions on growing anything but program crops on land designated for it. I thought 2007 was the wrong year to try that, but if other reforms can be made to support specialty crops (anything that isn't one of the program staple crops), it might be doable next time.

    And that tariff on sugar isn't going away while Minnesota (sugar beets) and Louisiana (cane) have seats on the ag cmtes.

  • on a comment on A DFH's Map of DC over 5 years ago

    First, thanks, very much.

    Though going back to why you were supporting Fallon in the first place, or why people supported other primary challengers, it was because they wouldn't respond. They might have still taken the calls, but it didn't matter. Boswell's staff are clearly just being more honest about it now.

    They take the calls of the people who, as you note, have the power to make their lives miserable. That means the paper whose reporter they can't stand, the annoying rep from the company that employs half the district, whatever. We can only make them (sort of) miserable around election time.

    Need to invent a better legislative thumbscrew.

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