Journalism

The astro-buzz, colony collapse disorder and other discontents

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

 We have come to use the term "astro-turfing," derived from plastic grass replacing real turf on playing fields and lawns, to describe various types of propaganda from political campaigns or corporate public relations campaigns (if they can be distinguished).

This posting compares one of doubtlessly many similar articles propagated by Monsanto and other pesticide manufacturers  to demonstrate their love and care for bees, and the horrifying statistics of Colony Collapse that plod down the years like the footsteps of doom itself.

 

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Brother George tells Gov. Smarty Pants to zip it

Submitted: May 12, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 5-1--15

Contra Costa Times

George Skelton: Delta tunnel plan -- a million hours and still not shovel-ready

By George SkeltonLos Angeles Times columnist

http://www.contracostatimes.com/opinion/ci_28095636/george-skelton:-delta-tunnel-plan--a-million-hours-and-still-not-shovelready

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Hogwash, flattery and 2 million acre-feet

Submitted: May 07, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 Politicians striking poses in the face of natural disaster is older than the pharaohs. It is easier to imagine a tree falling unseen and unheard in a forest than it is to imagine a disaster without politicians crawling all over it flattering their own efforts and the strength of "their people."

"Heck of a job, Brownie"...etc.

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Between drones

Submitted: Mar 26, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

It seems to be a week, as the drums of war go on beating, when people are looking for perspective. At least we don't think it is only us at Badlands. For awhile after the fall of the Soviet Union, there seemed to be a choice to be or not to be the world's policeman and "indispensable nation." Evidently, somewhere far beyond the counsel of ordinary people, the decision was made to continue to pour the public billions into the military-industrial complex.

Curiously, many of the so-called serious threats to our national security, for example, China, seem to investing in projects to improve their own and other nations' infrastructures to increase trade and prosperity.

 

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Huh?

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

“It is one thing for the US and Israel to spy on each other. It is another thing for Israel to steal US secrets and play them back to US legislators to undermine US diplomacy,” the Wall Street Journal quoted a senior US official as saying. -- Borger, Zonszein, The Guardian, March 24, 2015

 

Our current political situation is unprecedented. The vast majority of Americans keep falling behind economically because of changes in society's ground rules, while the rich get even richer -- yet this situation doesn't translate into a winning politics.

If anything, the right keeps gaining and the wealthy keep pulling away. How can this possibly be? -- Robert Kuttner, Huffington Post, March 24, 2015

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"Moving forward"

Submitted: Mar 18, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 We've been stunned by the drought and responses to it locally and at a state and national level. Environmentalists have been warning about how farmers have been over-drafting the aquifer in the Central Valley for decades and have been snubbed and demonized for mentioning it, as if we were not citizens and members of the same society that landowners and urban businessmen are. They don't even have to bribe elected officials anymore; social elites spring up overnight around wealth in new industries, whose "leaders" get what they want and they always want more water. Elected officials and educators -- from kindergarten to UC Merced -- babble on constantly about leadership. And they all use that one phrase, growing more absurd by the day: "We've got to move forward."

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Cloud of stink over new county courthouse

Submitted: Mar 11, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 MDA attorneys, headed by administrator Tom Pfeiff, handle criminal cases for indigent defendants in Merced County whenever any conflicts of interest prevent the Public Defender’s Office from representing someone..“Whatever issue has arisen with regard to the money received by Judge Garcia pursuant to the dissolution of our joint venture has nothing to do with MDA and is entirely between Judge Garcia and the Commission on Judicial Performance. Following the appointment, Pfeiff bought out Garcia, making payments in monthly installments between 2008 and 2012 totaling $250,000, the commission said.

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Not two sides to every story in the Bee

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

  

This article is a curious excuse for journalism because, although Valley congressmen "pressure(s) both sides in ports dispute," only one side is given a line in the story:

On Thursday, citing the higher costs entailed by holiday and weekend wage rates, the Pacific Maritime Association said it would suspend vessel operations through Monday. The association’s leaders contend longshoremen have been engaged in deliberate work slowdowns.

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Drought Dementia #4: Pineapple Express renamed, new funds, modeling and all that

Submitted: Feb 05, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 The avalanche of data will help scientists create a 3D model of atmospheric rivers and the factors that govern their rainfall, such as aerosols and dust in the atmosphere. The results will also help to improvehttp://images.intellitxt.com/ast/adTypes/icon1.png current forecast models, Ralph said.

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