RIP Günter Grass, 1927-2015

Here’s a really good obit of Grass, whose death I just heard about. What a crazy life.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2015/04/25/gras-a25.html

“Amongst Grass’s role models were German writer Alfred Döblin, Irish novelist James Joyce and other leading storytellers of the 20th century. Along with Siegfried Lens, Heinrich Böll and Uwe Johnson, he was a decisive voice in German postwar literature and made a significant contribution to a literary engagement with the traumas of 20th century history.

Grass’s world reputation does not rest alone on his epic fiction works, above all his début novel The Tin Drum. The fact that he continuously expressed his opinions on contemporary political issues, posed awkward questions and provided answers to them, invariably encountering strong criticism from sections of the media and politicians, was closely bound up with his artistic work.

With his critical perspective on society and history, the novelist attempted to break through the vale of forgetting and cover-up propagated by the postwar political establishment in Germany. It is testament to Grass’s steadfastness that his list of opponents ranged from leading figures in the Adenauer era (Konrad Adenauer was chancellor of West Germany from 1949 to 1963), when many old Nazis held high positions within the state and in business, to prominent politicians and media personalities in the present day.”

Food prices and the California drought

California WaterBlog

Water, a precious commodity, irrigates a field in southern San Joaquin Valley. wheat. near Bakersfield. Photo nu John R. Chacon/California Department of Water ResourcesA wheat field near Bakersfield, Calif., March 2015. Photo by John Chacon/California Department of Water Resources

By Daniel A. Sumner

California’s drought has been tough on farms and especially painful for farm workers in the Central Valley. But consumers of California-produced food have been spared large price increases.

Despite the severity of the drought and California’s dominant market shares in many foods – especially fruits, vegetables and tree nuts – consumers saw only small food price effects last year and are unlikely to notice much price impact in 2015. The reasons derive from California’s geography, irrigation plumbing system, the economics that drive the distribution of irrigation water among crops and the basics of food supply and demand.

The reduction in irrigated crop acreage – about a half million acres last year and likely much more this year – has been and will be mostly field crops such as rice, cotton…

View original post 683 more words

Things to do for Earth Day

Happy Earth Day! Here’s what to do in commemoration of the day:

–Plant a whole bunch of plants at your house, either in pots or in the ground if you have it. Study their preferences

–Prune any tree in sight. They like haircuts. Make art or tomato stands with the waste

–Locate and read a local plan to take action between Earth Day and Mayday.

–Don’t drive

–Pick up some garbage and/or recycling from the ground

–Buy someone a reusable water container

–Use natural light

–Decide that you don’t even need something you were thinking about buying

–Block a major road in your town with debris or handmade sawhorses that look like the transportation department’s real ones

–Start (or finish?) reading Edward Abbey’s Monkey Wrench Gang

–Tell everyone you know that you’re doing something for the Earth while they’re still being consumers

–Green-shame any “green” fools you know and direct them to something real

–Sabotage any big, transportation-dependent business

What will you do?

Book Review – Thar Express

Here’s a fascinating story from the east country fair. Read it, jolines!

Transition of Thoughts

Thar Express Thar Express

Source: http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/91CNfVxb5LL._SL1500_.jpg

‘Thar Express’ is an e-book by Nagendra Murti about a man who has lost his memory and the way he goes about remembering his past under the care of a good doctor. Does the book work? Let’s check it out.

The blurb goes like this –

Am I dead? Is this how it feels to be dead……?

Thar Express tells the story of a man who is rescued from the aftermath of a landslide near the India-Pakistan Line of Control. He is barely alive and appears to have no memory of his identity, his past or the circumstances that led him to a remote and sensitive part of the country that he was rescued from. After initially being cared for in an army hospital, he is sent to a doctor who specializes in treating those afflicted by memory loss.

Under the unconventional but effective care of…

View original post 493 more words

Farmworkers call for boycott against Driscolls

A consortium of workers voiced by the Fair World Project have called for a boycott of Driscoll’s berries. Read the full article here:

http://www.triplepundit.com/2015/04/farmworkers-union-calls-for-boycott-against-driscolls/

Finally, what I’ve been doing for ten years is catching on. Boycott Driscolls and Giant for life! You live in the midwest or New York and you just like your berries once in a while? Tough shit! I’m from the coast where they grow those berries, and it’s been totally inhuman and insane for at least 30 years. The farmworkers are treated like less than animals, and the year-round obsession has caused 3 miles of saltwater intrusion into the best soil in the world. Boycott for life!

As we know, the “fruta del diablo” or strawberry, is so dangerous and strenuous to pick that migrant farmworkers have long ended up at 20 years old with the backs of 40 year-olds. They take heroin in Pajaro and Prunedale to feel better, and that’s probably why heroin in Santa Cruz is so cheap for you idiot consumer college students.