News That Matters
Good Wednesday Morning,
Back in the fall when I brought the orchids inside I added a handful of compost to each pot. Within a few weeks, one of the pots developed a tomato plant from a stray seed that had not composted down properly. As I write this, that plant has grown up to take over a goodly portion of my kitchen greenhouse window and the first ripe tomato will be ready in just a few days with many more to come. Talk about a jump on spring!
In our poll about how you think the County legislature will deal with the Tilly Foster lease agreement, you said,
They'll accept the lease as is: 61%
All in all this means that the vast majority of you think they'll do the wrong thing. We'll see!
Looking for a corporation that knows how to do it right? Call ExxonMobil. While General Motors sells off its Congressmen and Chrysler tries to sell it self to Botswana, Serbia or Outer Mongolia, EM brought in 45.2 Billion dollars in 2008, beating their own record of 40.6 billion set in 2007. But that's nothing compared to the $1 TRILLION we spend each year on defense and 'defense related' spending.
GOP leaders in Congress have been working hard to remove "pork" from the President's economic stimulus package. As I look through the list they've provided I'm finding a total of about 19 billion out of a total 900 billion dollars worth of spending. Within that list are such items as improvements to sewer systems, monies for substance abuse problems, energy efficiency programs, STD eradication programs, computers for community colleges and rural waste disposal programs. Also on the list is near $700 million for a new Department of Homeland Security building and coming from the GOP, the folks who forced that one on us in the first place, I find that quite odd.
While we're talking about billions, the hundred billion dollar a year War on Drugs simply cannot hide the fact that not only is it America's most expensive joke, but that it's also proven itself to be, well, a little backwards. If marijuana did all the bad things to you the government claims it does, how do they explain President Obama and Michael Phelps? One got to be President and the other, one of the world's greatest athletes. There was another President who was once a coke fiend and the one before him smoked but didn't inhale. Anyway, there's another place we can save a hundred billion a year.
Okay, maybe the coke fiend was a bad idea.
The City of London, England, has all but shut down due to the worst winter storm in 18 years. A weather system moved in with a vengeance and dropped a whopping 8 inches of snow on the British capitol stopping bus and rail service and closing Gatwick airport for half a day. In Birmingham, the 2" of snow that fell caused schools to close for 2 days. England's national weather service warns of another crippling snowstorm for this evening with estimates of a full inch of snow falling across southern England and warns Englanders to be prepared for the worst. Huh.
And now, The News:
DEC Commissioner Pete Grannis recently urged support of the "Bigger Better Bottle Bill," saying it would reduce litter, keep million of containers out of our landfills, help in the fight against global warming, and generate badly needed revenue.
As communities become environmentally conscious and involved, they modify and reach beyond old development-impact reduction methods to more interlinked, efficient and cost-effective strategies at site, neighborhood and regional levels, writes EPA Development, Community, and Environment Division (DCED) Acting Director Lynn Richards in her ''Managing Stormwater Runoff: A Green Infrastructure Approach'' paper in the Planning Commissioners Journal (Winter 2009), calling decisions ''about where and how our towns, cities and regions grow'' the first and perhaps the most important for long-term water quality.
Today's Dream Homes:
Green building is permeating -- and lifting up -- the limping housing market. Also see 30+ Ways to Save Money by Going Green
Buyers are losing interest in an energy-draining dream home that comes with high costs and wasteful space. The economy has swiftly changed us from seeking abundant to practical living. A real estate ad that sings praises about all of the space that a home has to offer, like this dream home described below in an ad, now has a buyer's head spinning with dollar signs and question marks above.
Dominic Waughray , Senior director, head of environmental initiatives, World Economic Forum, Geneva
by Paul Kiel, ProPublica - February 3, 2009 11:29 am EST
DEC recently released preliminary results showing that more than 15,000 junior hunters took advantage of a new law signed by Governor David A. Paterson to create a "junior big-game" hunting license and expand outdoor opportunities. DEC also released preliminary results indicating that the 2008 deer hunting harvest will match the previous year's totals, though it will be less than expected. Meanwhile, bear harvest totals ran high, with a new record set in the Allegany range and likely in the Catskill range. Final, official harvest numbers will be available in February after deer hunting concludes in Westchester and Suffolk counties.
Some analysts say government spending is more reliable because consumers often pocket tax breaks.
By Peter Grier| Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor/ February 3, 2009 edition
Saudi Arabia Arrests Christian Blogger
Written by The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information