Thursday, February 11, 2016

Musings: Stinky

It's hard to believe Donald Trump's candidacy endures. But as we've seen time and again, never underestimate the stupidity — and gullibility — of the easily led.

While on the campaign trail in New Hampshire, Trump blamed Mexicans — such a convenient scapegoat — for the heroin problem there. Never mind that health officials say most people get started with over-prescribed, ready available painkillers like Percocet, OxyContin and Vicodin, then move on to junk. As the CDC reports:

Health care providers wrote 259 million prescriptions for painkillers in 2012, enough for every American adult to have a bottle of pills. The Northeast, especially Maine and New Hampshire, had the most prescriptions per person for long-acting and high-dose painkillers.

But that reality interferes with Trump's brilliant plan to wall off the border with Mexico, so he just ignores it. I wonder, is he planning a similar approach to end the ice epidemic in Hawaii? But if the Islands are sealed off, how will the food get in?

Speaking of walls, and bordering nations, Canada has again declared its candidacy for POTUS. My favorite part of its platform:

We'll open one free day care for every closed Planned Parenthood clinic.

Shoots, they got my vote.

Though Trump won't shut up, the state Department of Health is all mum. As in, it won't tell us who is awarding those lucrative medical marijuana licenses or even who picked the power-wielding panelists.

Civil Beat quotes Gov. Ige as saying it's important to keep it all secret “to ensure they can properly do their jobs.” Ya mean like award licenses to their friends before folks can cry foul?

Yet in the perverse world of politics, Ige's spokeswoman actually sees the secrecy as ensuring that the process “is perceived to be fair and objective.”

Oh, yes, I've always found secrecy, and the inability to scrutinize the qualifications of those doling out valuable contracts, as part and parcel of “fair and objective.”

From where I sit, it's all kinda stinky, especially when you see folks who are well-connected politically, like Charles Kawakami, Sen. Kalani English and former Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle, submitting applications as principles or investors. It's really hard to believe it's going to be solely merit-based, especially given the minimalist application process.

Speaking of stinky, The Garden Island reports there was a fish kill at Sunrise Capital, the Kauai shrimp farm. It reports, too, that Carl Berg of Surfrider was out there, gagging at the smell. But also salivating at the prospect of being able to shut them down. Seems Surfrider fought the company's permit, just like it's fighting the proposed dairy at Mahaulepu. the seed fields on the westside, cattle most anywhere and Roundup everywhere.

But no, they aren't anti-ag. They fully support gentlemanly farms and the odd “yarden” or two, where bees are kept not for honey, but meditative purposes.

Meanwhile, Surfrider is running an anti-pesticide radio spot, and one of its members (and former Kauai mayoral candidate), Diana LaBedz, is doing the voice-over for GMO-Free Kauai's latest fear-fest.

Apparently, they aren't getting enough traction in the free echo chamber at KKCR, so they're actually buying 30-second ad spots to take their message of “Be afraid. Be very very very afraid, so fucking afraid you can't sleep at night” out to the rest of the island.

In one spot, she tells farm, landscape and government workers they should be “very concerned” about their health. “Your illness could be caused by the pesticides you are spraying.”

In another spot, she claims we're being “poisoned by Roundup” and then goes on to state, as it it were fact, that Alzheimers, Parkinsons, autism, miscarriages and brain, breast, lung and prostate cancer “are illnesses tied to Roundup.”

Curiously, this particular anti-Roundup propaganda campaign was preceded by the Surfrider-funded and directed study that found glyphosate (Roundup ) in honey. And it will be followed by release of the Joint Fact Finding Group's report on pesticides, which has a special section on glyphosate. My, what a set of coincidences!

As the liberal website Alternet reports:

What’s going on is Americans are endlessly being bombarded with media messages that are fearful and deceitful. The result not only affects our politics and policies, as we are insistently told to fear and respond to exaggerated or fake threats. But, going deeper, this onslaught literally shapes how brains work and what people end up believing, [linguist and author George] Lakoff and other astute observers have said. The result is many small problems get undue attention while widespread problems go unacknowledged and unanswered.

You know, like focusing on Roundup while ignoring the very real threats of meth, hunger, homelessness and poverty. But hey, “GMO-Free Kauai cares about your health.” That's why it feeds you a steady diet of fear. Because it's so good for you.

The article continues:

Repetition of fear-based messaging—without a steady counterpoint or context to stop that drumbeat—has been shown to affect the brain patterns that determine how people think.

Indeed. As I've pointed out repeatedly, the anti-GMO movement in Hawaii is predicated on fear-mongering. And in that, they have an ally in Donald Trump. 
[S]ince love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. —Niccolò Machiavelli, The Prince, 1513

38 comments:

Anonymous said...

What did the terrorists in Oregon fear?

Anonymous said...

There you are, walking your baby, thinking you’re getting healthy walking, or riding your bike, or riding in the back of a pick-up truck, and you didn’t even know you were being poisoned by round up unless you got home and had a headache.

Anonymous said...

Because that could be the only explanation for the headache.

Anonymous said...

Take one look at Trump and you all say that he should be president.

He has an orange face with orange hair with white around his eyes.

Fuckah look like puckup oompah loompa.

Anonymous said...

Round up replaced many pesticides that were far worse for people. I wonder why the call is not to reduce pesticide use in general, rather than just to get rid of glyphosate. If round up is discontinued, some other noxious product will take its place. Reduce pesticide use period, then we will all be a bit healthier.

Anonymous said...

Riding in the back of a pick up truck?
Yeah that's safe.....and you're worried about the possibility of an infinitesimally small exposure to Roundup?

You people need some basic training in risk analysis.

Anonymous said...

I thought headaches was you did not want sex. "Not tonite Honey, I got a headache." Read other triggers for headache: red wine or white wine; bananas; other alcohol; citrus fruits; chocolate; monosodium glutamate (MSG); cheese; freshly bake bread (yeast); pickled foods; coffee, tea, cola: nuts; aspartame (food or drink); stressful day, sudden change in weather; poor posture and tense jaws (like riding in the back of a pick up truck, no mo shirt on, cold wind, clench da teeth). As ok, blame roundup. We humans, we need to blame something. We are never wrong.

Anonymous said...

RE: Pot Clinics - I'm thinking that the normal government process of putting such contacts out to bid would not only create more fee/tax income for the State but insure that pot prices are high, quite possibly higher than many dopers can afford thereby preserving the black market in pakalolo. It's all about the money and the legislators that are now licking their chops will soon realize that they're up against long established underground supply lines and predatory pricing. I think few medical marijuana users care where it comes from as long as it does the trick.

Anonymous said...

the only way paka dispenseries could work is if the legislature banned people to grow their own

Anonymous said...

The Marijuana dispensaries are the tip of the iceberg. Pakalolo will be legalized within a few years. The HSTA is begging for a GET increase, JoAnn is begging for a GET increase. When you have so many begging for more, it will be like Colorado, sell dope to get the money for to teach the kids.
So, Mr Kawakami with his son in the Lege and Ron Kouchi (and his many friends) pushing for his app, he will get it. Kawakami has the retail space and his calabash has the land to grow.
We are small enough to have our own private banking system.
100s of millions of dollars. The process should be that ALL of the money be tracked whether thru cash to friends, 1099s or corporate dividends.
This could prove to be the all time greatest manipulation of process in our corrupt state's history.
There were lots of loose lips a few weeks ago when the potential dope sellers were looking for locations to deal....problem solved. Commercial space, immense political power and a corrupt process.
Our Governor wants the public to know every detail about an applicant to be on the Barber/haircutter Board and every other State Board or commission....but the Dope Syndicates can operate with complete secrecy.
Holy sh*t Batman, our we in a time warp?
This doper conspiracy makes all of Da Hoos' actions, Bynum's scandal, JoAnn's Ag CPRs manini. Who woulda ever thought that such upright people would sell their souls to get the dope money?
400 per ounce.....and a few hundred thousand tourist buyers.
Politics does pay. Even if the Issei and Nisei are rolling in their graves.

Anonymous said...

Sure. Now that the shrimp farm is on its feet, let us shut it down. That is the liberal way of doing business. A Bernie Sanders voter for sure.

Anonymous said...

we are devastated and in mourning for the suffering issei and nissei rolling in their graves because their offspring are planting and profiting from a plant that people use to relax or feel better. Our issei and nissei are ok with slow suicide by tobacco and alcohol abuse being sold - peddled - in their families' businesses.

Harvy Yee said...

This things are just diversion, the spend much money for this. Rather than feeding the poor and homeless people.

Anonymous said...

Most jobs require drug testing. smoke pot = no job. pot price can be capped. until the federal government deregulates pot, it is illegal unless you have a fake medical card. most pot seeds are gmo. the thc content is up there. old first timers might not land back to earth.

Anonymous said...

400 an ounce? You're getting ripped off. Are you a tourist?

Anonymous said...

Aloha Joan:
SO, Anti GMO people: Upset because the County and State uses it? There's no way they could keep up with weed maintenance alongside the highways and parks unless they spray. Cutting by hand usually promotes seeds spreading as well. I would applaud them getting together and adopting a park or stretch of highway to show the rest of the island how they can maintain one stretch with their weeding and good physical efforts.

I personally love Roundup. Use it not often, but it does the job and so far my family is still alive, I haven't gotten a headache in years, my knees hurt though, but I believe its old age creeping. I wash my hands after I use it, and rinse out my sprayer. I also put some soap in it to have it stick. I wish it were stronger, but when I put too much the weed "burns" and dies off a little and comes back in a few weeks. Everyone simply needs to follow directions. And that part about the fumigators and golf courses getting a free ride from the Anti's is because they are of use to the developers and pro developers. That's how I see it.

Anonymous said...

Are you the guy spraying the fence line on the bypass driving the atv with a cigarette in one hand and the sprayer in the other? It was impressive how you sprayed that fence line, I especially liked how you let the roundup spray back on you with "no fear". Be sure to get back to us when things don't turn out so good for your health or one of your family members.

Anonymous said...

Chill out, 1:28PM, You'll probably pack it in from hysteria originated hypertension before the guy on the ATV cashes in his chips. Oh, and keep your eyes on the road while you are driving or you'll add inattention to driving to your cumulative probability for COD.

Anonymous said...

1:28 PM, if you really witnessed someone applying a spray (contents unknown) in violation of usage requirements (also unknown), report it to the employer instead of complaining on a blog.

Anonymous said...

The DOT should ask the golf courses how to control the vegetation along the shoulders or somebody who knows better than to let the grass grow until it seeds before weed whacking or spraying. Somebody is getting money to do the worst possible job and use the most resources to do it.

Anonymous said...

yes

Anonymous said...

The DOH should make sure their land is not next to a school.

Anonymous said...

The DOT has reduced their pesticide use tremendously over the years, do a lot more mechanical clearing and have improved their work noticeably . The invasive grasses are not easy to control and if you looked at DOTs herbicide use over the years you would see a huge reduction. It's a big job, though not perfect, the improvement is there.
If you want some area to be done better, get your weed wacker out and go do it.

Anonymous said...

@ 8:21pm: 1:28pm isn't going to report it cause it's a bullshit made up incident.

Anonymous said...

9:28 If DOT asks the golf courses how to control the vegetation along the shoulders the answer will be herbicides. What do you think they use?

Anonymous said...

10:48 am Go to CJ Liddle's December 21 Facebook post. It's not the incident I was writing about but the exact same scenario. It is happening somewhere on Kauai everyday. Whether it's the county workers, golf course, hotel, private citizen, ...

Joan Conrow said...

Dear Disgruntled. It's not up to me to prove your comments. And pictures of what was sprayed are quite different than actual pictures of the person doing the spraying.

Anonymous said...

Well if you saw it on FB it must be true. That's even cheesier than citing Wikipedia as a source.

Anonymous said...

Linda Bothe, a renowned source of biased misinformation, in today's GIN letters claimed the Kauai Joint Fact-Finding Group is stacked with agribusiness people. Of course, the Kauai County website is down for Valentine's Day so I can't find a list of the membership. Do you know where I can see a reliable list of the groups members and their backgrounds? Thanks!

Joan Conrow said...

They are: Adam Asquith, Lee Evslin, Gerardo Rojas Garcia, Sarah Styan, Kathleen West-Hurd, Douglas Wilmore, Kawika Winter, Louisa Wooton and Roy Yamakawa.

Sarah is the only member from agribusiness.

Anonymous said...

It's a video of someone spraying roundup on the fence line along Kapaa Bypass. They are spraying it and the wind is blowing right back on to them. I so it with my own two eyes, in person in a different vehicle.

Anonymous said...

Mahalo, Joan!

Anonymous said...

12:34 it's not the herbicide. It's the waiting until the grass is so tall that it starts to seed that bothers me.

Anonymous said...

The emissions from the vehicles you were riding in and behind and in front of are doing far more damage to you than some rancher clearing his fence lines with herbicide. You just choose to ignore that.

Anonymous said...

Hi Joan, regarding the members of the JFFG, I thought Gerardo worked for DuPont Pioneer and then Dow Agrosciences?

Joan Conrow said...

You're right, he is with DOW. So there are two from agribusiness, five that are anti-GMO and/or pro-2491 and one that is a wild card.

Princess Burke said...

It's hard to understand how the world works today. Alot of hidden agenda with this kind of science development.

Anonymous said...

Most states have emissions tests as a safety inspection before being able to register your vehicle.