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Archive for February 16th, 2012

MacPherson’s Lament

When I was young I borrowed a field recording of music from the Scottish Hebrides from the library, and loved this tune in particular. I cannot find the recording that moved me so, and this is the closest I could get to the raw power of the thing, but bear in mind this is like whisky with water, and the real thing was straight up:

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Small Farmers Fight Back

“For some 200 years, potato farming has been central to the economy of Aroostook County. As recently as 60 years ago, northern Maine was the top producer of potatoes in North America.
But that has changed. Increased rainfall due to climate change has resulted in barren harvests. Steady wetness from May to September made 2011 the toughest growing year local potato farmers have experienced in a generation.

“This fall, because of the terrible weather conditions, there were fields as large as 180 acres where not a single potato was dug,” Gerritsen said. “The kind of tragic loss that occurs with that is pretty devastating.”

To make matters worse, farmers in northern Maine are losing out to larger farms in western United States with federally subsidized irrigation and low electric rates. A large farm in North Dakota, for instance, might irrigate with electric pumps at a rate of 2.3 cents per kilowatt hour. For Gerritsen, that rate is 18 cents per kilowatt hour.

“We’ve been out-competed not on the basis of competition alone, but on the basis of federal subsidy and the development of larger and larger farms,” he said.”

How they are resisting: http://www.wirenh.com/food-mainmenu-56/29-food-general/5534-the-way-food-should-be.html

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This Just In

From Cracked via the Conservative Blog for Peace:

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