Fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, rolling back the Clean Air Act, Harvey, Irma, Maria, defunding the EPA, Puerto Rico, Florida, Texas, California, climate change denial becomes policy, sexual harassment, World War III, floods, droughts: If you follow the news you have heard about all of these incidents. It gets to be overwhelming. In this country alone hundreds of thousands of people are being worn down by the constant barrage of bad news. This country has been through this to some extent before, for example during the Depression and during the late 1960s and the Viet Nam War. However, today people are plugged in and it takes effort to avoid the news. We don’t have to wait for the delivery of the morning newspaper. We can follow “the news” constantly online.
Humans aren’t made to process an unlimited amount of trauma. In fact, we’re wired to protect ourselves against it. . . . seeing so much destruction and feeling incapable of doing anything leads to a kind of moral distress.
We all need to take a step back, breathe deeply, and take a break. Taking care of ourselves is a priority in times like these. Let’s make it a habit.
Don’t rake your leaves! Let the flowers with drying seed heads remain! Leave all the garden debris where it is. There are lots of insects, mice, worms, and other critters that will make good use of your garden during the winter. Next spring you can clean it up. The over-wintering pollinators will thank you. Sign a Pledge To Be a Lazy Gardener at the Habitat Network.
While we spend time counting who is kneeling and who is not kneeling, who is getting berated publicly by The Twit, who has resigned from the corrupt regime, we should remember than we all live on a spectacular planet. Do check out the EPOD link, in the summary description there is a link to an amazing video of the strongest solar X flare in a decade.
The U.S. Codex Office is moving from USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) to USDA’s Trade and Foreign Affairs Office and that may not be such a good thing.
The Codex Alimentarius, aka the “Food Code”, is a set of standards, guidelines and codes designed to protect food quality and safety. One example is the safe level of veterinary drug residues in meat and poultry.
Is the Trump regime again sidelining the food safety standards in the U.S.? That seems to be the case. The op-ed by Dr. Richard Raymond is well worth reading. Bit by bit our policy infrastructure is being pulled apart in insidious ways.
Are we emphasizing trade goals over food safety? Was the new USDA undersecretary for trade and foreign agriculture affairs the first announced USDA nominee after Secretary Perdue?
The answer to both questions is yes, and is confirmed by the lack of an Undersecretary for food safety who might have advised against this move, and even campaigned in the halls of Congress to maintain the status quo, a status that had very high international respect. Moving Codex Out of FSIS Will Boost Trade, Not Food Safety
Food Safety News, Sept. 21, 2017, by Dr. Richard Raymond
Solipsistic reality means that the only reality he’s capable of embracing has to do with his own self and the perception by and protection of his own self. And for a president to be so bound in this isolated solipsistic reality could not be more dangerous for the country and for the world.
New (and old) research suggest that the nutrient balance in plants is being upset by the increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Plants use carbon dioxide much like we depend on oxygen. It looks like increased levels of carbon dioxide shift the balance of nutrients in plants with decreases in proteins and other nutrients and increases in glucose (sugar). This will have global implications since many people depend on a plant-based diet for protein. Even the bees are affected because the nutrients in pollen has changed. The relationship between increased carbon dioxide and plant nutrition is finally getting attention in the research communities. This may very well turn out to be a Big Deal.