Public Works

California Farm Bureau gibberish on federal drought bills

Submitted: Nov 30, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 This article, which appeared earlier this month in the Farm Bureau's AgAlert magazine, is a masterpiece of the neo-Farm Bureau Gibberish. We say "neo" because whole new generations of young sophists have taken over from older, less grammatical, folksier whining feeders at the government trough.

We would suggest you spend some time with the article, but we also suggest some orienting questions before you leap into the thicket.

(1) Is the federal government a subsidiary of California agribusiness?

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Book review of Right out of California

Submitted: Nov 24, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board
 This is an interesting review of a book, Right out of California, which argues that conflict between growers and migrant farm labor produced the peculiarly authoritarian right-wing element in "modern conservatism" (aka ideology of the wingnuts). For those who are still open enough to behold the core of California agribusiness -- exploitation of migrant labor, often foreign and with as little legal rights as possible -- without which the agro-plutocracy could not rule and its bottomlessly greedy babble about more water for themselves and all the rest of their favorite topics, paranoias, protestations of love for the Mexican people, and acts of threat and political corruption would appear to be what they are: mountains of the well known substance.

Be careful of whose stocking you consider stuffing this book into. It is recommended only for people with a greater ability to reflect than to be ditto heads because it puts into question every sacred cow that has ever ambled beneath Modesto's famous arch: Water Wealth Contentment Health -- to which there can be only reply: "Not! Not now!

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Our young turkeys of the land gobble on

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

 “They (environmental groups) can emotionally appeal to the general-election voting base a whole lot more effectively than they can in an off-election cycle,” Koehn said.

Jeff Marchini, director of Division 1, said things are different than in 2011. If MID wants to protect its water from the environmental groups in Sacramento, switching the election years is the right thing to do, he said.

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Capital grinds on in the Delta

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

 

"If you got the money, honey,

I got the water..."

 The Delta Whiners 

 

Osha Meserve, a lawyer for Local agencies of the North Delta, said delta farmers should be worried.

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Federal subsidy for the Last Tango of the Dinosaurs

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

 “If it wasn’t for having crop insurance right now, I would have lost everything three generations of Messonniers have created. If it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t be here. It’s that simple.” ... “This was the first year ever we didn’t do any rice,” (Tom Roduner) said. “Sometimes we have a little bit. It’s so bleak this year, between the water allocation and how dry things were, it just wasn’t feasible to do any.”

-- Calix, Merced Sun-Star, Oct. 28, 2015

 

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Humanity doesn't deserve Nature

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

 Suppose, contrary to nearly universal public opinion, humanity doesn't deserve nature. Man is destroying ecological system after ecological system, extinguishing species after driving them into habitat corrals, constantly encroached upon by agricultural and housing development. The only way the story of the global environmental crisis makes sense is once hope is removed from reflections on it.

Every day is the New Day!

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Bernie Rising Out West

Submitted: Oct 09, 2015

...and Hill rolls down to the Plain of Oblivion.

 

10-7-15

commondreams.org

Golden State's Love for Sanders Grows as Support for Clinton Dwindles

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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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Westlands/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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