Blogs

The first rain

Submitted: Oct 01, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 After the rain today in Merced it was as if the city had had a cataract operation, replacing the sepia tinted lens of drought. ---blj

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The contribution to global warming of artificial fertilizers

Submitted: Oct 01, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 Fertilisers, especially nitrogen fertilisers, require an enormous amount of energy to produce... Faced with this dilemma, the fertiliser companies have moved aggressively to control the international debate on agriculture and climate change, and to position themselves as a necessary part of the solution.

 -- GRAIN, Sept. 30, 2015

 

 

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Leader Kevin McCarthy: On to Grenada!

Submitted: Sep 29, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 9-28-15

The American Conservative

Kevin McCarthy’s Outdated Foreign Policy

Daniel Larson

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The Bobcat guzzles the KoolAid

Submitted: Sep 28, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 In vain once again, as we often have since the arrival of the University of California among us, we ask what sort of questions, if any, the faculty of UC Merced are asking as they lavish their attention on the Sierra Nevada (or not so much nevada lately).

We have watched them flirt with social issues, discovering that Hispanic youth prefer to stay at home when going to college. They solved that problem by importing Hispanic youth from Los Angeles.

There was the global warming period, when UC Merced did important original research on cow farts. There was even a time when the mission of the campus was seen as mainly in the Humanities. 

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Overdrafting credulity on the east side

Submitted: Sep 24, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Journalists shouldn't take at face value the public utterances of other peoples' consultants, for example the Provost and Pritchard Consulting Group, in the pay of the Eastside Water District, a mysterious institution that lacks any surface water to distribute.

We may be over-emphasizing a small point, but when the consultant said:

“The groundwater pumping has caused a ‘cone of depression’ and groundwater overdraft to occur,” said a report on the project by the Provost & Pritchard Consulting Group in Modesto. “This is due to the lack of a surface water supply that could offer groundwater recharge in the area and lead to a sustainable supply.”

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What is it about Bernie Sanders?

Submitted: Sep 23, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 “And now let me tell you something that no other candidate for president will tell you. And that is no matter who is elected to be president, that person will not be able to address the enormous problems facing the working families of our country. They will not be able to succeed because the power of corporate America, the power of Wall Street, the power of campaign donors, is so great that no president alone can stand up to them. That is the truth. People may be uncomfortable about hearing it, but that is the reality.”

— Bernie Sanders, Friday, Aug. 14, Clear Lake, Iowa

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Westland/BOR deal clips

Submitted: Sep 21, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 Below, you'll find a few articles on the Westlands/Bureau of Reclamation deal. As is often the case with California water stories in recent years, the best reporting is done by Dan Bacher, who grew out of reporting on good fishing spots in the Delta to become one of the few fact-based voices in the bug swarm of flak hovering above the surface of water issues in this state.

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Sweethearts of San Luis renew their vows

Submitted: Sep 16, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

It's not really a divorce... 

 

The Westlands Water District, which provides water to the west side of the San Joaquin Valley. This region is an area of polluted quick sand which devours other peoples' water, law and political representatives from the local to the federal levels, in fact devours everything but the fortunes of a plutocracy of several hundred growers.

Ordinarily we would have prefaced the newspaper account of this latest secret deal-made public between Westlands and the federal government, but there appeared such an eloquent letter in opposition from retired US Fish & Wildlife biologist, Felix Smith, that it outranked the Fresno Bee piece. The latter was a boiled over wire-service story no one was willing to sign. To give an idea of who Smith is, we prefaced his letter with a moment in his biography.

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Perspectives beyond 9/11

Submitted: Sep 13, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 The arrival of the date 9/11 again was the occasion for a number of reflective essays in the press and on the Net. Few of them outlasted their current news cycle.

These do.

-blj

 

9-8-15

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A public outreach plan to make a public outreach plan

Submitted: Sep 10, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

After a few months of relative order, the Merced City Council went off the rails again Tuesday night. The rhetoric of desperate sleaze prevailed as councilmen tried to explain to us that now that a closed door, ad hoc committee not subject to the state rules of public meetings had chosen a consultant to plan the new high speed railroad station downtown, to the tune of $664,150  in public funds, now great plans will be made for public outreach and education.

The $664,150 comes from a $600,000 planning grant from the High Speed Rail Authority and $200,000 in matching funds from the City of Merced's general fund.

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