Friday, October 16, 2009

Musings: More Sweet than Bitter

Koko and I encountered a joy-infusing landscape when we went out walking in the brisk coolness this morning. For starters, Venus was glowing in a purple sky just above a fingernail moon that starts fresh again tomorrow. Beneath them, a band of red smoldered above the ocean, then turned orange, then faded to white gold.

On the mauka side of things, all the mountains were perfectly clear, and as the dawn approached, Makaleha and Waialeale shifted from black to Kelly green and steel blue, respectively.

Next came pink, in the form of fluffy clouds and backlighting behind the mountains, and then the gold returned, a bright shimmering sparkle of it that encased the rising sun.

I kept my head up and my eyes high, which helped me to ignore the human contributions to the scene: a smashed kitten being pulverized into pavement; a torn brown paper bag containing an empty quart bottle of beer; the inevitable Icee cups and straws plastered against sagging chain link fences.

It’s not always easy to blot out the ugly side, but I try, an approach to life that no doubt prompted a friend who knows me well to send a link to the more sweet than bitter She’s Got a Retro Kind of Love blog.

Two sample excerpts:

I can’t feel anything but gratitude for every single moment of my stupid little life…

and

Today, I found out my boyfriend had been cheating on me for 3 weeks. In retaliation, I threw a brick through the back window of the car he had apparently cheated in, when I thought he wasn’t home and nobody was around to see it. Sadly, they were in the backseat then. I face assault charges now. FML

Moving on, we’ve got the sweet news that Ireland is banning the cultivation of all genetically modified plants and adopting a voluntary labeling policy for GM-free food. Why?

“The Irish Government plan to ban GM crops and to provide a voluntary GM-fee label for qualifying animal produce makes obvious business sense for our agri-food and eco-tourism sectors [3]. Everyone knows that US and EU consumers, food brands and retailers want safe GM-free food, and Ireland is ideally positioned to deliver the safest, most credible GM-free food band in Europe, if not the world.”

So there’s yet another bandwagon we failed to jump on....

It’s accompanied by the bitter news of a sustained attack on AndrĂ©s Carrasco, a professor in Argentina who has published research confirming the lethal effect of glyphosate — aka Monsanto’s Roundup — on embryos.

His case points out an ugly truth, as recounted by Prof. Carrasco:

[T]here are no institutional channels accessible to scientists who can undertake research of this type, with powerful interests lined up against them.

Meanwhile, the thorny problem of GMOs ending up where they’re not supposed to continues, with reports that 28 nations that do not allow GM flax for human consumption have been affected by a shipment of Canadian flax contaminated with GMOs. Curiously, according to the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network:

European authorities have named the source of contamination as the GM flax "Triffid", which was developed in Canada but was deregistered in 2001 and has been illegal to sell since that time.

Kinda makes you wonder, sort of like yesterday’s report in The Garden Island about a big biomass project that was supposed to be online by 2012, supplying 30 percent of the island’s energy needs and forestalling the need for “the Kapaia Unit Two Combustion Turbine project for the foreseeable future,” according to KIUC President and CEO Randy Hee.

Aurai!

That was followed, in Paul Harvey style, with “the rest of the story” in today’s edition. Seems the deal is “just a concept” with “several steps” still remaining, like securing 15,000 acres of land and then successfully growing the sugar cane and woody biomass that’s required. Oh, and financing.

But hey, no worries! Minor!

It seems Pacific West Energy — a mainland investment firm with no experience in either alternative energy or agriculture — is still pushing a pipe dream that it couldn’t make work with Gay & Robinson, which actually has land and knows how to grow sugar.

If this is any indication of how KIUC is looking to transition into alternative energy, we’re screwed.

Speaking of which, why do you suppose the county is so keen to rid itself of the pesky need to certify shorelines before building stuff along the coast? Do you suppose it could have anything to do with the bikepath along Wailua Beach, or future plans for seawalls and other forms of armoring the shoreline, which inevitably destroy public beaches?

But it’s Friday, and a beautiful day, so let’s forget the bitter and focus on the sweet: talking Chihuahuas.

Have a nice day! :D

4 comments:

Ed Coll said...

Joan said"It seems Pacific West Energy — a mainland investment firm with no experience in either alternative energy or agriculture — is still pushing a pipe dream that it couldn’t make work with Gay & Robinson, which actually has land and knows how to grow sugar.

If this is any indication of how KIUC is looking to transition into alternative energy, we’re screwed."

At least KIUC had the common sense to avoid WRE Kauai 22.5 LLC Bio Fuels and Biomass Generator Proposal
that has been touted in a slew of TGI letters to the editor. A detailed review and analysis of this proposal can be found at http://kauai.net

irk said...

The Kauai GMO Community outreach program announces it's annual Halloween Corn Maze on the Koloa bypass road!
Spooky, indeed!
Send the kids!

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