#COroadtrip: The bats of the San Luis Valley | FOX31 Denver
Sometimes you don’t get to see the full beauty of a community until the sun sets and darkness creeps in. Such is the case in Villa Grove, where the town’s population boosts from a couple hundred to more than a quarter million during the summer months.
ValleyView  bats 
may 2019
Need to de-stress? Try the healing waters of Colorado's historic hot springs
Visiting hippy-dippy, crunchy-granola, clothing-optional Valley View Hot Springs requires determination. Part of the nonprofit Orient Land Trust, a conservation organization, daily access to the hot springs is limited, and only donors to the trust may make advance reservations; otherwise you have to call the morning you want to visit and hope you can get in. Sure, you can try popping in, but it's a fairly remote location (about an hour south of Mount Princeton) and you risk being turned away. Inconvenient, yes -- but it also ensures that the gorgeous, rustic springs aren't overcrowded.
ValleyView 
may 2019
Visit a Huge Bachelor Bat Colony at the Orient Land Trust | 5280
You’ve likely heard of more renowned bat caves, such as those in Carlsbad Caverns National Park, but their colonies comprise mainly females and their offspring. The San Luis Valley’s Orient Mine hosts the largest colony of Mexican free-tailed bats in Colorado. But unlike at Carlsbad, the Orient Mine’s occupants are part of a bachelor colony—i.e., it’s majority-male. While almost-all-dude fraternities aren’t unheard of (females typically live separately with the kids so they don’t have to compete for food), their rosters tend to number in the hundreds or low thousands. The Orient, in contrast, houses 100,000 male bats on average from June to early July. By the end of this month, the colony’s population will swell as high as 250,000 as the ladies and their pups meet up with the guys in preparation for winter migration.
bats  ValleyView 
may 2019
Night-Hiking With the San Luis Valley's Bachelor Bats
Since this particular roost is composed mostly of males who have temporarily separated from larger colonies of females, most of whom are busy lactating and rearing their newborn pups, it’s considered a bachelor colony. Females give birth in June, and since males don’t help raise their young, they typically split off during this period. The Orient Mine bachelors’ counterpart maternity colony summers further south, in New Mexico’s Carlsbad Caverns

In fact, The Orient Mine hosts not only the largest bachelor colony of Brazilian free-tail bats in North America (interestingly, bachelor colonies are typically much smaller, numbering in the hundreds or low thousands), but also the highest in terms of elevation. The migratory mammals have been spending summers here since at least the 1960s. They usually arrive from Mexico in mid-June and return south via Carlsbad Caverns by the end of September [...]

From 1880 until its closing in 1932, the Orient Mine produced two million tons of limonite and supported more than 400 people. Cutting through the piñon-juniper forest, smaller paths lead to old foundations and rusted barrels—the ruins of Orient Town. The bats were first recorded in the Orient Mine about 35 years after extraction operations ceased. [...] The bats’ nightly hunts, coupled with the valley’s dry climate and bitter winters, reduce the need here for agricultural pesticides. [...] the 2,200-acres it protects are home to [...] two threatened species of fish—the Rio Grande Chub and the Rio Grande Sucker. Near the hot springs, the humidity and warm waters create a microclimate that supports a rare mountain orchid, a hot springs endemic snail, and one of Colorado’s few populations of fireflies.
SierraClub  bats  ValleyView 
may 2019
The Portland Swap Meet - Hot Rod Network
Having been to most of the other big West Coast events including the San Diego and Turlock winter meets, Long Beach, Pomona, the L.A. Roaster’s “Father’s Day” swap meet, and the old Long Beach Ford Model T swap meet, I had a high expectation level to fill. Needless to say, Portland surpassed my expectations and was arguably one of the best, if not the best, antique and vintage auto swap meet I’ve attended in a long time.
hotrods 
april 2019
American car culture hits skids with Millennials
"The automobile provided the means for teenagers to live their own lives. Social media blows any limits out of the water. You don't need the car to go find friends." Much of the emotional meaning of the car, especially to young adults, has transferred to the smartphone, says Mark Lizewskie, executive director of the Antique Automobile Club of America Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania. "Instead of Ford versus Chevy, it's Apple versus Android, and instead of customizing their ride, they customize their phones with covers and apps," he says.
hotrods 
april 2019
The 47th Annual Portland Swap Meet - Hot Rod Network
There’s even something about a swap meet that gets the creative juices flowing even if you come home empty handed.
hotrods 
april 2019
Portland Swap Meet - Hot Rod Network
When it comes to good buys, abandoned projects can be an absolute bargain. For one reason or another someone’s dream of building a truck came to a halt and now it’s got a For Sale sign hanging on it with a price far less that the value of the individual parts.
hotrods 
april 2019
Rose City Roundup at Portland Meadows
Along with the car clubs came very unique hand built awards were presented to cars by the various clubs they chose personally. This is one of the coolest features of traditional car shows, you can park where you want as there are no classes, and if you win an award it’s actually something cool and worthwhile instead of a plastic throw away trophy. The Driven Dead present five awards as a club along with offerings from the other clubs attending the show. I checked out the unique awards in depth, all of which would display as awesome pieces of art in any garage. ... My wife and I recently moved from the Midwest to the Pacific Northwest and were surprised by a lack of traditional car shows in the area as we had attended many of them back home. We were skeptical as to what we might find at the Round-Up, but we felt right at home.
hotrods 
april 2019
Classic Trucks and Parts Come to Portland, Oregon
Heading into its 51st year, the Portland Swap Meet is said to be the biggest event of its type on the West Coast.
hotrods 
april 2019
The Red Door Meet Brings Portland's Car Community Together
“A while back there wasn’t really a car scene in Portland,” Dayton said. “And then this kind of evolved to that. We joke now every Sunday, like, ‘Hey are you going to church tonight?’”
hotrods 
april 2019
'The variety of cars is absurd!' [2018]
The all-volunteer show, produced by the Rotary Club of Forest Grove, is the largest and longest-running Concours d-Elegance in the Pacific Northwest. ... "Black Ice," a custom 1934 Ford 3-window coupe owned by Jim Stewart of Portland, which took first-place honors at the 2018 Portland Roadster Show.
hotrods 
april 2019
Portland Roadster Show back for 62nd year [2018]
Jothen said this is one of the largest roadster shows in the country but the only one not operated by a corporation. MHRC is a 501(c)3 non-profit and the event is completely run by volunteers. ... MHRC President David Jothen said they even have 3 vehicles from the Transformers movies, including the Optimus Prime semi.
hotrods 
march 2019
Targeted Classicist Speaks Out
Dan-el Padilla Peralta, the assistant professor of classics at Princeton University who faced a race-based verbal attack on Saturday at a conference of the Society for Classical Studies, is telling his story.
segregationistleft  academia  InsideHigherEd 
january 2019
Senate Beat: Grievances against Community Safety Aired at Student-only Forum
Minority students, in particular, stated that they were disproportionately on the receiving end of CSO behavior and treatment they described as “tactless.” Common grievances aired at the event included complaints of ableist, transphobic, and racist behavior against student, staff, and community members. This ranged from issues of misgendering to incidents of perceived racial profiling. [...] Some spoke of widely varying experiences with securing no contact orders; some raised negative interactions with Gary Granger in regards to rape, who they perceived as insensitive to their concerns. [...] Finally, Senate used the same meeting to appoint this year’s Renn Fayre czars. Eden Daniels, Elena McKnight, Jules Oh, and Grey Saquee will form Reed’s first majority-POC team of Renn Fayre Czars.
Quest 
january 2019
Funding Poll, Revisited
The Low-SES/First-Gen Student Group received 1 deep 6, the Students of Color Union received 2, the Students of Color Community received 4, and Receipts, the new student publication centering the voices of students of color, received 9. Additionally, the Queer Student Union received 2, the LatinX Student Union received 1, and the Gender Minority Fitness Club received 3. This is not an isolated phenomenon, but the latest in a series of Funding Polls in which groups that support student identities have received a small but alarmingly consistent amount of deep 6 votes, representative of persistent prejudice and discriminatory behavior in the Reed community.
[...]
Additionally, for possibly the first time in the history of Funding Poll, one student organization received a negative score this year: the Thinkery. With a final tally of 93 deep-sixes, the club, which describes itself as “a student organization at Reed College dedicated to critical and open discussion,” emerged with a whopping -155 points.
[...]
The Thinkery was not the only controversial student organization on this year’s poll. Weapons of Mass Distraction (WMD), Reed’s fire spinning troupe, received over thirty deep-sixes this year, after accusations of cultural appropriation prompted an ongoing discussion about the group’s role on the Reed campus.
Quest 
january 2019
Change May Be on the Horizon for Funding Poll
The inclusion of identity groups in Funding Poll also concerned her. “It was really disappointing — but not surprising — to see the deep sixes for identity groups come in,” she said. “It’s just unnecessary and hateful.”
Quest 
january 2019
Hum 110.2.0
The new curriculum also gives students a greater opportunity to ask questions related to race, ethnicity, and gender — for example, by studying the works of female writers — questions which, according to Minardi, have only been present in the study of the humanities for the last fifty years. The Religion Department has decided not to lead lectures or conferences in the second semester due to its attempt to cover a degree of space and time that they believe is incompatible with the practice of religion as a discipline. For more information on this issue, see Elai Kobayashi-Solomon’s article “Losing Faith” in the September 14 issue of the Quest.
Quest  Hum110 
january 2019
Have a Laugh
Events like the Reed comedy open mic nights give students the opportunity to express their thoughts in a funny, relatable manner while remaining considerate of the variety of differences in the student body. [...] Reedies passionate about the art of comedy have banded together to redefine stand-up, steering away from sensitive topics while maintaining the raunchy attitude you’d expect to get out of a comedy show.
Quest 
january 2019
A ResLife Divided Cannot Stand
Tess Verbal added, “I think the theme community is operated like a club, which is fine … but if it’s not ADA compliant then I don’t really see the point,” bringing up the one of the main reasons for the the overhaul of theme communities. In a letter from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights in 2016 outlining the specific American with Disabilities Act (ADA) violations Reed committed with the theme housing inaccessibility, officials address the administration’s failure to maintain a “grievance procedure that provides a prompt and equitable resolution of disability discrimination complaints.” Neighborhoods may seem like a sensible response to the need for easier social avenues on campus, but in reality, the idea for neighborhoods originated from a history of complaints from students regarding the inaccessibility of the dorms the theme communities are housed in.

The theme dorms faced legal action because were not in accordance with federal law established by the Fair Housing Act, which “prohibits housing discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status, and national origin,” the administration was forced to compromise accommodations for students seeking interest-based living communities, and more importantly, the access to resources on campus by students with disabilities.
Quest 
january 2019
A Conversation with the Renn Fayre Czars
Elena added, “This year is an all POC Renn Fayre Czar team and just because of that it’ll be better. And this year we just want it to be continuous and interactive and some sort of social justice bend like fundraisers and stuff so we’re not just funnelling all this money into a big party.’”
Quest  segregationistleft 
january 2019
Jed Rubenfeld on Rape Law: Feminists Debate Force Versus Non-Consent
“I’m in favor of an expanded force requirement,” he said, “an understanding that sees force in threats, in drugging, in physical restraint (holding the victim down, locking the victim up), and so on.” Still, critics say even a broad force requirement like the one Rubenfeld sketches is bound to discourage some cases from coming to trial.

The American Law Institute’s new model code, now slated to be finished around 2016, may functionally decide the force-versus-nonconsent debate. The most likely outcome right now, Murphy says, is an approach that has become popular in rape statutes in recent decades: creating several different “grades” for the crime, with rape that involves force perhaps meriting the harshest punishment. This kind of grading has ignited a new controversy among feminists, some of whom believe that any attempt to classify levels of harm risks minimizing the particular trauma that comes with sexual crime. But graded statutes are practical: They’re inviting to prosecutors, since they provide more freedom, and they seem to best capture the intuitions of judges and juries.
TNR  maritalrape 
december 2018
Yes, Marital Rape Happens, and it is Terrible
This is an extension of the idea that wives are the property of their husbands, as Diana Russell wrote in her 1990 landmark book Rape in Marriage. [...] The legal definition of marital rape varies within the United States, but it is generally defined as any unwanted intercourse or penetration (vaginal, anal, or oral) obtained by force, threat of force, or when the wife is unable to consent (Russell, 1990).
maritalrape  HuffPo 
december 2018
Young People Are Having Less Sex
Just a few decades ago, after all, marital rape was still legal in many states.
maritalrape  history  KateJulian  Atlantic 
december 2018
Top 5 Reasons to Leave Afghanistan
If the goal is to establish a stable government to fill the vacuum created by our ousting of the Taliban and al-Qaida, we've done quite a job. Most Americans can accept a Marine's risking life and limb to safeguard our freedoms. But when that Marine is protector of a corrupt and depraved foreign parliament -- one that recently legalized marital rape ... it is not a victory worth celebrating.
maritalrape  abroad  Atlantic 
december 2018
Mad Men's Very Modern Sexism Problem
(It was legal for a man to rape his wife anywhere in America until 1975; marital rape wasn't a criminal offense in all fifty states until 1993.)
maritalrape  history  Atlantic 
december 2018
Michael Cohen, Donald Trump Adviser, Apologizes for Marital Rape Comment
The original remarks came during an interview with the Daily Beast, published Monday, that centered on decades-old allegations that Donald Trump physically and sexually assaulted his then-wife Ivana Trump before the pair's divorce in 1992. When the Daily Beast asked about Ivana Trump using the term "rape" to describe an alleged violent incident she had with Donald Trump in 1989, Cohen responded, "It is true. You cannot rape your spouse. And there's very clear case law."

The full statement reads: "You're talking about the frontrunner for the GOP, presidential candidate, as well as a private individual who never raped anybody. And, of course, understand that by the very definition, you can't rape your spouse."
maritalrape  history  Trump 
december 2018
The Many Scandals of Donald Trump: A Cheat Sheet
The dirt: While married to Ivana Trump, Donald Trump became angry at her—according to a book by Harry Hurt, over a painful scalp-reduction surgery—and allegedly forcibly had sex with her. Ivana Trump said during a deposition in their divorce case that she “felt violated” and that her husband had raped her. Later, Ivana Trump released a statement saying: “During a deposition given by me in connection with my matrimonial case, I stated that my husband had raped me. [O]n one occasion during 1989, Mr. Trump and I had marital relations in which he behaved very differently toward me than he had during our marriage. As a woman, I felt violated, as the love and tenderness, which he normally exhibited towards me, was absent. I referred to this as a ‘rape,’ but I do not want my words to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense.”

The upshot: When The Daily Beast reported on the incident, Trump’s right-hand man Michael Cohen threatened reporters and claimed—incorrectly—that a man cannot legally rape his wife.
maritalrape  Trump  Atlantic 
december 2018
What Exactly Was Michael Cohen Doing for Donald Trump?
More telling were the other two. In 2015, The Daily Beast uncovered an old anecdote in which Ivana Trump had accused Donald of marital rape. (She later backed away from the claim—and signed a sweeping gag order in her divorce agreement.) Cohen’s threat to the Beast was less legal than brutal: “I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we’re in the courthouse. And I will take you for every penny you still don’t have. And I will come after your Daily Beast and everybody else that you possibly know. So I’m warning you, tread very fucking lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be fucking disgusting. You understand me?” On matters of law, however, he was shaky, arguing that one could not legally rape a spouse—which hasn’t been true in New York since 1984.
maritalrape  history  Trump  Atlantic 
december 2018
Toronto's Incel Van Attack Should Not Surprise Canada
“And Canada’s law is based on British common law, which was very permissive about violence against women and girls,” Bourgeois continued, pointing out that marital rape was legal as late as 1983.
maritalrape  history  abroad 
december 2018
Todd Akin’s apology: His comments on spousal rape and forcible rape show mistrust of women.
Akin’s track record on this issue goes back to 1991, when he was a state legislator in Missouri. At the time, Missouri was one of four states in which husbands, by definition, couldn’t be prosecuted for raping their wives. A bill came to the floor of the Missouri House that would abolish this exemption, making spousal rape a crime. Akin joined 118 of 134 state representatives in voting for the bill. But during the debate, according to a contemporaneous report in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (flagged two weeks ago by Sahil Kapur in Talking Points Memo), Akin warned that a law against marital rape might be abused ''in a real messy divorce as a tool and a legal weapon to beat up on the husband.''
maritalrape  history  WilliamSaletan 
december 2018
"Elizabeth Wolstenholme Elmy and the Victorian Feminist Movement" book excerpts
Criminal Code Bill that she opposed and didn't pass: "Rape is the act of a man, not under the age of 14 years, having carnal knowledge of a woman, who is not his wife, without her consent."

Page 160: "Only those who are constantly called to help and advise suffering wives can know what unspeakable infamies are sometimes hidden under the veil of legal marriage."
maritalrape  history  abroad 
december 2018
Arwa Aburawa interviews Maureen Wright for Manchester Radical History
Elizabeth’s abhorrence of marital rape became clear in 1880, when she stood on the platform of the London Dialectical Society to declare her desire to see the practice criminalised. Her opposition was in part built on personal reasons and a desire to see a legal inequality quashed. Wives were often beaten or starved for non-compliance or, as evidence from one notable legal case of 1891 shows, imprisoned against their will. Elizabeth saw the crime of marital rape as one common to women of all classes, and thus a cause of unity. At a moment when even polite society was concerned with the ever-increasing rise in sexually transmitted diseases she found a receptive audience, in some quarters, for her views. That is not to say her path in this regard was an easy one; far from it, for she found herself apologising to her 1880 audience for speaking, as a woman, on so ‘delicate’ an issue in public. Of all the disadvantages married women faced Elizabeth believed this ‘sex slavery’, as she termed, it to be the worst. For all her efforts, Elizabeth did not see a law passed against it in her lifetime – in fact this did not pass the Statute Book until 1991.
maritalrape  history  abroad 
december 2018
The Early Feminist Who Used Botany to Teach Kids About Sex
According to [Maureen Wright’s biography Elizabeth Wolstenholme Elmy and the Victorian Feminist Movement: The Biography of an Insurgent Woman], Elmy was the first woman on record to speak publicly against marital rape and argue for its criminality.
maritalrape  history  abroad  Atlantic 
december 2018
Trump’s Bailout Won’t Stop Farmers’ Anti-Tariff Campaign
These farmers’ frustration is understandable. In Trump’s maniacally nationalistic dreamscape, American industries might be getting killed by rotten trade deals; but in reality, the United States heavily subsidizes its domestic agriculture — in ways that give it an unfair advantage in the global ag trade — and America’s allies have largely tolerated this arrangement.
farmers 
august 2018
Iowa farmers, workers are not a rounding error
What do you call $624 million in lost revenue? Thanks to tariffs being pushed in Washington and retaliatory actions from other countries, that’s the price tag on the trade war for Iowa soybean farmers. Peter Navarro, the White House trade advisor, called the cost of those tariffs a "rounding error."
farmers 
august 2018
Trump's huge pile of soybeans [right after election]
U.S. farmers are sitting on a record amount of soybeans, corn and wheat — and now it’s Donald Trump’s problem. The USDA’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates shook commodities markets upon release Wednesday by predicting record surpluses for those and other crops. While the Obama administration had pitched the TPP as the solution to the growing glut and resulting price slump, the president-elect has panned the deal, so he’ll have to come up with a different fix.
farmers 
july 2018
Trump Must Consider Farmers When Waging Trade Wars
Farmers in 2016 took a big chance by supporting Donald Trump for president. They were reluctant at first, giving him a second-place finish in the farm-heavy Iowa caucuses. However, they soon came around and overwhelmingly voted for him in the general election.

Let me explain that initial reluctance, as someone who both knows farmers and worked for the Trump campaign. Many farms depend on (overwhelmingly legal) seasonal migrant labor from Mexico and Latin America to help harvest their crops and fully 20 percent of farm profits depend on sales to international markets.

Here was a candidate who was promising to crack down on illegal immigration, which could have knock-on effects on the supply of legal farm workers. Candidate Trump also threatened to start trade wars. He wanted to do this to improve how U.S. goods are treated in many foreign markets, by making it harder for goods from those countries to enter our markets. But in trade wars, as in actual wars, there are casualties. Groups like Farmers for Free Trade recognize this, and as highlighted in their recent ad campaign, the agriculture sector is getting mowed down in this trade war.

Farmers knew this, but they also knew something important about farming and trade: America is a breadbasket. The soils here are fertile and plentiful. About 25 percent of our landmass is arable. China, a nation of about the same size, can only make use of about 10 percent of its landmass to grow crops.

This means that we can easily grow enough to feed enough Americans and then some. That surplus gets exported and becomes a major part of America’s trade with other countries. Farmers knew that if you take away farming exports, then the trade deficits that Trump complains about would only get much, much worse.
farmers  BEST  immigration 
july 2018
Farmers urged to speak out on damaging trade wars and policies
[Farmers for Free Trade] Kuehl’s concerns about Trump’s trade actions started with the U.S. withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership involving 11 other nations that are home to more than 800 million consumers. TPP would have eliminated most tariffs and harmonized safety regulations. Kuehl said an American Farm Bureau Federation study estimated it would have given a $4.4 billion annual boost to U.S. farm income.

He said the other countries have moved forward on TPP, which makes it more difficult to sell U.S. ag products there. “When the U.S. doesn’t act, it doesn’t mean other countries are at a standstill,” Kuehl said. “Trade agreements move forward without us.” He added that TPP was formed in part to create a coalition that could offset China’s economic influence.
[...]
Kuehl listed two other problems with steel and aluminum tariffs — they were placed on countries that are allies and the resulting higher steel and aluminum prices have increased costs for machinery, fencing and other supplies used by farmers and ranchers.
farmers 
july 2018
How China's soybean tariffs affect suburban farmers
When both countries imposed the tariffs last week, it stirred even more uncertainty for farmers who want a quick resolution. Since May, soybean prices dipped about $2 per bushel to $8.55 Wednesday, less than the approximately $9-per-bushel cost to produce the crop in Illinois.

The ramifications may reach into some suburban communities, as experts predict farmers forced to continue selling at a loss will cut spending in other areas, such as farm machinery, storage bins, pickup trucks and chemicals.

[Trump's false tweet]
farmers 
july 2018
Making Hay from the Trade War in Agriculture
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, American farmers have not seen an increase in their “cash receipts”, or revenue, since 2014 when total receipts rose slightly to almost $425 billion. That year ended up being the peak year in receipts for the Farm Belt. In the last three years, total receipts for farmers wilted to roughly $380 billion.
...
In the past month, China has made the following changes to lessen its reliance on U.S. soybeans:

Removed inspection requirements on a variety of substitute products including peanut meal, cottonseed meal and rapeseed meal.
Issued a mandate to farmers in Heilongjiang, China’s top soybean-producing province, to grow more soybeans. The government increased subsidies on soybeans to a level where they now are double those of corn, a strong incentive for farmers to switch crops.
Increased imports from Russia and Brazil. Brazil, whose soybean crop is at record levels, could replace most of the orders previously supplied by U.S. farmers.
farmers 
july 2018
Dust Bowl Economics - Trump wants taxpayers to bail out farmers hurt by his trade war.
When pork prices collapsed amid a global trade war during the Great Depression, the Roosevelt Administration in 1933 had an idea—slaughter six million piglets. Put a floor under prices by destroying supply. It didn’t work. Now the Trump Administration may try its own version of Depressionomics by using the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to support crop prices walloped by the Trump tariffs: Hurt farmers and then put them on the government dole. How about not hurting them in the first place?
WSJ  farmers  editorial 
july 2018
Midterm elections could test GOP's patience with Trump's trade war
House GOP lawmakers have made their opposition to the tariffs clear to Trump, but so far haven't put any direct pressure on Trump to stand down through legislation. One reason for that is Trump's ongoing popularity in some of the GOP strongholds they represent.

[Davis quote]
RodneyDavis  farmers 
july 2018
Cook: Rodney Davis “remains the favorite,” but chances improve for Dem
It won’t be easy for Democrats to portray Davis as a Trump lackey; he rescinded his support of Trump in October 2016 after Access Hollywood. But Londrigan says Davis’s 2017 vote to repeal the ACA is what motivated her to run against the “Trump/Davis agenda.” She’ll use the personal story of her son’s life threatening tick bite in 2009 to illustrate her commitment to affordable health coverage.
RodneyDavis  CookReport 
july 2018
Letter to the Editor | New campaign slogan falling flat
Government debt is skyrocketing thanks to a huge corporate tax cut. It was supposed to raise wages. It didn't. The average hourly real wage of American workers fell slightly in the last year.
...
Even before our District 13 Congressman Rodney Davis voted for those corporate tax cuts, he voted to turn Medicare into an underfunded private voucher program. In District 13, we grow lots of soybeans. Soybean prices are crashing as one of the first casualties of Trump's several pointless, destructive trade wars.
RodneyDavis  farmers 
july 2018
Remembering the ‘Carter Embargo’
But those facts couldn’t compete with farmers’ memories even then, noted the UPI newswire service in its Nov. 13, 1986 report on the USDA study. “The Carter Administration’s benefits to farmers and grain companies right after the embargo more than compensated farmers for losses caused by the embargo, the study said.”

Indeed, USDA explained, Carter’s swift actions raised farm income by $2.2 billion over the following four years. Most farmers don’t remember it that way—even though Carter was one of them, a farmer.
farmers  history 
july 2018
Exceptional Corn and Soybean Yields in 2017
The next eight highest yielding counties were Sangamon County, Illinois (70.3 bushel per acre);
farmers  stats 
july 2018
Trump's Trade war with China would cripple Illinois: Sun-Times editorial
Illinois is the United States’ leading producer of soybeans, and China is our best customer. The Chinese buy almost 25 percent of the state’s output, about $1.75 billion in soybeans.

Last year, Illinois produced nearly 612 million bushels of soybeans, according to the Illinois Soybean Association. And about 114,000 people in Illinois have jobs thanks to that huge demand for soybeans and byproducts, such as soybean meal and biodiesel, according to the association’s marketing committee chairman, Austin Rincker.

Overall, revenues for Illinois farmers are down considerably in the last five years, in part because grain supplies have outpaced demands, but soybeans have been the exception. They have been profitable, Rincker says, “because of the demand in China.”

China’s expanding middle class also has developed a taste for much more pork. Farmers there have gone in on raising hogs, but they still can’t keep up with their nation’s demand for pork.

That’s where the U.S. — and Illinois — come in. Illinois has the nation’s fourth-largest inventory of hogs. China is Illinois’ second-best customer for pork, behind only Mexico. Hogs are fed soybean meal, which also helps to keep soybean farmers in business.

Any slowdown for Illinois farmers affects related industries. Manufacturers of agricultural equipment, such as Illinois-based John Deere, also stand to lose if China follows through with its tariffs.
farmers  Trump  stats 
july 2018
China takes aim at America's soybean farmers
...
Soybeans are America's leading agricultural export, with $21.6 billion in sales last year. Nearly 60% of the beans went to China, followed by Mexico and Japan, according to Panjiva, a research firm. American soybean production exceeds this country's demand for the crop, forcing producers to look overseas.
farmers  Trump  stats 
july 2018
I’m a Farmer and Trump Voter. Here’s How He Can Keep Our Support.
However, the outlook for rural America and many of my farming peers is not so bright. Farm income has decreased by 52% since 2013. Rural America’s job market is smaller than it was prior to the Great Recession, and one in three rural counties has a poverty rate of 20% or more.

Now, as tensions between the U.S. and China continue to escalate, the future of critical trade deals like the NAFTA are more important than ever. Without NAFTA, our ability to sell homegrown goods to key markets around the world hangs in the balance.

We recognize and appreciate Trump’s commitment to protect American interests through trade and are fully aware that China is a bad actor on many fronts. Two out of three farmers and ranchers like myself voted for Trump precisely because of his promises to stand up for people like us. Unfortunately, the unintended consequences of the president’s recent trade actions are already being felt among his most loyal supporters across the heartland.
farmers  Trump  stats 
july 2018
American farmers worry they'll pay the price of Trump's trade war
Farmers are often the first to feel the hit in trade disputes that may not involve their own products, said Salmonsen. This time, the scale of the dispute could hardly be worse: US agricultural exports are worth about $140bn a year. Canada and Mexico import about $39bn worth, China’s share is $20bn and the EU around $12bn. All those countries have threatened retaliation over metal tariffs.
...
Nafta has been great for US agriculture: exports were just $8.9bn in 1993 before the agreement.
farmers  Trump  Guardian  history  stats 
july 2018
Farmers to Trump: No trade war, please
China — the second-biggest market for U.S. agricultural exports
...
Support payments may remove some short-term pain, but farmers say the real damage would come in the long term. “When we become a supplier that’s not reliable, countries look elsewhere,” said Recker, who currently serves as president of the Iowa Corn Growers Association. “This will embolden South America — Argentina and Brazil — to expand their acres and just make them even more of a competitor.”

Brian Duncan, who raises hogs and cattle and grows row crops in Ogle County, Illinois, and is vice president of the state’s Farm Bureau, told POLITICO that while he appreciates the president acknowledging that agricultural producers are going to take a hit, he is skeptical of the assistance being promised. “We’ve spent decades trying to work ourselves away from government assistance,” Duncan said. “Part of that has been the development of foreign markets.”
...
Lawmakers are trying to pass a farm bill before a Sept. 30 deadline, though in the House a partisan fight over proposed changes to the food stamp program — which accounts for 80 percent of cost of the legislation — has upended what once expected to be a bipartisan process and cast uncertainty over whether it can attract enough votes.
farmers  Trump  Politico  history 
july 2018
'The world is so cruel': MAX train attack witnesses grieve, heal, rage on anniversary
Pacheco joined two Facebook groups where she pays monthly dues – what she described as reparations -- to benefit black women and people of color.
reparations 
may 2018
Faculty Charts Bold New Course for Hum 110
Maurice Isserman in the comments:

What a load of horseshit.

Under the gun of an unprecedented, obnoxious, coercive, and irrational "student"protest, which represented, actually, a tiny proportion of student opinion, the Hum faculty (that is, its senior, tenured members) folded, and threw out both academic freedom and the central identity of a Reed education. The failure here starts with the president (now gone, I guess, like Paul Ryan, he wanted to spend more time with his family, for all we know from Reed magazine), to the dean of faculty, to the senior members of the Hum 110 faculty (who decided to make it a "choice" of all Hum faculty whether they would lecture when students who were not registered in the course, i.e. upperclass students, surrounded them with posters accusing them of racism for discussing Aristotle, Plato, and Sappho.) So, yeah, I certainly get it after 40 years myself teaching in liberal arts colleges like Reed, it's really easy (not) for junior faculty to vote against senior faculty in that situation, or on their own, to refuse to permit students not in the class to associate them with police killing innocent black victims in the street. Which, as is obvious to all true believers, makes perfect sense (that is, police killing innocent black men is exactly like lecturing on Aristotle and Sappho in a Reed classroom), of course. So brave of that tiny minority of Reed students to protest murderous racism on the Reed campus -- as opposed to, say, confronting the Portland police department in the streets (as we used to do -- I can send you references). And you needn't travel so far to protest murderous racism on the Reed campus (I mean, why miss lunch in commons, after all).

Don't take my word for the impact on junior Hum faculty -- read this:

https://www.washingtonpost....

This is disgusting. It is the most shameful moment in a century-plus of Reed's history. And, for what it's worth, I (my fault) led the first Hum 110 protest in 1968 as a 17 year old freshman. And, let's be clear, I was wrong, as I realized by the end of the year, when I decided Hum 110 was a really good course. Which is why I signed up for Hum 210 the next year. But even when we were protesting Hum 110, we didn't for a second assume we had the right (privilege) to interfere with the teaching of the course.

If Reed really wants to be like every other mediocre college in the US, why don't we introduce fraternities and sororities while we're at it?

Chives comments:

To those alumni unhappy about the college changing Hum 110, let me offer some possible consolation: Hum 110 died long ago; we're just now getting around to the funeral. For at least the last 25 years, Hum 110 has been a parody (or worse) of a rigorous survey of the classics of Western Civilization. Most of the profs hate Western peoples and Western virtues and use the class to undermine the belief of Americans in their traditions. Read the classic texts again, and others that were omitted from the syllabus, because your future may depend on it.

For those alumni who are happy about the change, let me point out a concern that may not be obvious. Like many of you, the Hum 110 instructors were sympathetic to the protesters and at the same time maybe a little frustrated with the class disruptions. After all, the profs were trying to create a more inclusive society by teaching them how to deconstruct the revered art and texts of their oppressors. But, judging from their demands, the protesters don't share those values. Study the decolonization revolutions - Haiti, Mexico, Zimbabwe - and the Great Migration to cities like Harlem, Baltimore, and Detroit. You may not be welcome in a post-Western society.
ReedMag  Hum110 
april 2018
New Hum 110 Gets National Attention
the Mexican revolution, and into the indigenous peoples and student protests of the twentieth century.
ReedMag  Hum110 
april 2018
The Sinkhole Hunters: In sprawling Florida, one group of geologists is never short on business.
But Florida has more than just its natural terrain with which to contend. Florida and its 20 million residents are putting a terrific strain on the fragile bedrock underneath. The problem comes from continuously tapping the aquifer, and compromising the limestone underneath. Every lawn that’s watered or pool that’s filled threatens to destabilize the karst. “They draw down the water table and it turns into a flushing toilet,” says Randall Orndorff, a geologist with the United States Geological Survey.

In normal conditions, precipitation hits the ground and the water percolates into the soil and rock below, causing natural groundwater formations. But when the ground is covered with impermeable surfaces—roads, houses, Walmarts—rainfall runs off into sewers and storm drains instead. “Hard surfaces—roofs, sidewalks, parking lots—all those things change the surface-water flow and may focus water into an area where there could be an unknown cavity and could cause collapse,” says Clint Kromhout, of the Florida Geological Survey.

Once new housing communities are built, the residents’ incessant pumping of water underneath only makes the problems worse. A recent study by the USGS concluded that long-term water pumping can lead to groundwater declines, “sometimes converting flowing springs to dry sinkholes.” With so many sinkholes forming, the challenge for scientists, such as those at Geohazards, is how to find them before they devour their next victim.
Nautilus  sinkholes 
april 2018
Responding to student criticism that its foundational humanities course is too white, Reed College announces changes
commenter: Yes, you can Google their list of demands. This includes: “The alteration of Reed’s Operating Principles and Diversity Statement, to reflect a focus on anti-racism/anti-oppressive rather than diversity.” The explicit goal is not to include new ideas, but to exclude those they find oppressive, i.e., too “white.”
InsideHigherEd  Hum110 
april 2018
Sinkholes now appearing in the wrong places [May 2017]
From early December through April, according to a review by The Associated Press of media coverage, 39 significant sinkholes related to failing infrastructure — a rate of about one every four days — struck across the country in places as varied as Chicago, Los Angeles, Hoboken, New Jersey, Sioux City, Iowa, and Seattle.
[...]
"The financial impact on cities is in the millions of dollars a year around the country," said Bob Brinkmann, a professor of geology, environment and sustainability at Hofstra University.
sinkholes 
march 2018
Floridians rate state officials on sinkholes [Oct 2016]
Most Floridians think the state is doing a fair to poor job on sinkholes. The finding was part of the 2016 USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey.
sinkholes 
march 2018
Nervous Villagers have plenty of questions about sinkholes in Calumet Grove | Villages-News.com
Nearly 200 Villagers crowded into a Mulberry Grove Recreation Center on Monday night for a question-and-answer session regarding sinkholes. So many people showed up that all of the chairs were used. Some people stood for much of the two and a half hour session. Community Development District 4 Supervisor Don Deakin had set up the meeting as he has done several times over the past six months. He normally has around 40 Villagers show up for these informal Q&A sessions.
march 2018
Homeowners not satisfied after briefing on status of sinkholes threatening their homes
“Is there something the community can do rather than wait to have a sinkhole?” she asked. Unfortunately, the answer was “no.”
march 2018
Counterpoint: Yes, There’s a Free Speech Crisis and No, I Won’t Shut Up About It
We all may agree that when white nationalist Richard Spencer talks, it's hate speech, but what about Madeline Albright, who was twice the subject of campus dis-invitation campaigns by students in 2016? Or Claire Guthrie Gastañaga, the head of the ACLU of Virginia, whose appearance at William & Mary was protested in 2017? Do Albright and Gastañaga practice hate speech as well? And who gets to decide?
KatieHerzog  Stranger  freespeech  stats 
march 2018
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