Thursday, April 02, 2015

Scattershooting contempt

-- The Texas Lege and its budget debate has been just a little too much for me to endure.  Charles has posted and aggregated in full, so if you want to get today's revulsion out of the way early, he's there for you.  Of particular disgust would be the account in the TexTrib regarding the exchange between state Rep. Stuart Spitzer and everybody else, as the Texas House discussed whether his amendment to move $3 million in funding for HIV and STD prevention programs to abstinence-only education was a good idea.  It passed 97-37, which is practically a party-line vote, so that must mean the answer is 'yes' if you're Republican and 'no' if you're a Democrat.

Oh, and RG Ratcliffe has some biography of Dr./Deacon Spitzer.  Yes, he's a surgeon.

The theocracy is strong with this one.  Everybody understood on the night of the first Tuesday of last November that things were going to be just as bad as you could imagine, and Stuart Spitzer is even more terrible than that.  This is "why waste my beautiful mind" territory, and yes, it can get worse.  There's two more months of this legislative session to go.  They're just getting warmed up.

Update: nonsequiteuse makes up for the contempt I can't bear.

-- Much like the Israeli-Palestinian question, I have deferred picking a side in the GMO debate.  My buddy Gadfly thinks it's Luddism to deny or condemn the science -- so does Neil deGrasse Tyson -- but then I read about Monsanto's "discredit bureau", and ask myself why a company producing a safe product would need a such a thing, or have a team of social media activists countering negative GMO data online, or prefer that people eating that food not have it labeled as such.  All of which may suggest the reason the company needs so many lobbyists... even a former lobbyist named Hillary Clinton.

It reminds me of the way the Texas Commission on (Reducing) Environmental Quality is designed to operate.  It's not just Monsanto, of course; Nestle' does this too.  And many other conglomerated food companies, which also are growing larger themselves.

There's a not-insignificant body of evidence that suggests there's a better way.  I wonder if NDG might address some of those specifics.

So since it's all about profit and capitalism anyway, my free market principle is that an apple that won't turn brown might be a wonderful thing, I'm just not willing to pay more for it.  On the other hand, since they're already charging me more for an organic one...

-- What if oil doesn't make a comeback?  This has greater ramifications than just Texas Comptroller Jethro Bodine's tit in a wringer.  The author of that piece concludes with the answer "unlikely" to the question proposed.   So does this analyst.  So does Boone Pickens.  The consensus among the bulls seems to be 70-80 dollar oil by the end of the year, and maybe even this quarter.

For Houston and Texas' sake, they had better be right.

1 comment:

Gadfly said...

Let me caveat, per your link, that I do think Big Ag is a form of Big Biz on GMOs. And, the "discredit bureau" can also attack people who criticize junk food or whatever.

That said, gentle readers?

Click those Grist links in my piece; again, Grist is a reputable environmental mag.

And, on the mergers, what, you don't want 57 Varieties of Crap from Kraft? :)


And, even the mild "bulls" on oil are full of it. Especially if something happens positive with Iran. We could see sub-40 oil then.