Gwynne Dyer: Biofuel mania ends days of cheap food

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It's not just me, or crazy USians.. Seems some folks in New Zealand think the same. Keep expanding those gardens.
Charlie
______________--
Full article at:
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/466/story.cfm?c_idF6&objectid 450519&pnum=0
excerpt:
The era of cheap food is over. The price of maize has doubled in a year, and wheat futures are at their highest in a decade. The food price index in India has risen 11 per cent in one year, and in Mexico in January there were riots after the price of corn flour - used in making the staple food of the poor, tortillas - went up fourfold.
Even in the developed countries food prices are going up, and they are not going to come down again. Cheap food lasted for only 50 years.
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Perhaps worth a look.
http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_environment/feed /
Bill
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William Wagner wrote:

hey,
thanks for that link, checked them out and signed up........
rae
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Charlie wrote:

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/466/story.cfm?c_idF6&objectid 450519&pnum=0
funny.............the market price of corn has gone down, but the local price of soybeans has sky-rocketed to 9.06 a bushel. Local farmers have been hauling beans like crazy the last couple of days.
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On Tue, 17 Jul 2007 16:48:15 -0500, Charlie wrote:

Whoa, podner...the price of corn/maize has zoomed because of the misbegotten "plan" to grow corn for biofuel. Totally ridiculous, when an ancient plant like hemp that can grow on the worst ground and reseeds itself, would do the same only much cheaper. Hemp has been used since antiquity for everything from sails to clothing to oil to...endless socially important applications.
The US is the only Puritanical country that bows to the hysteria of the uninformed about hemp's cousin, marijuana. Just try getting high on hemp; you'll collapse from exhaustion first.
Of course the result has been to send corn prices sky high in places like Mexico, where it is the staple food in the form of tortillas.
But the U.S. corn-producing states, their lobbiespaying off Congress big-time, are laughing all the way to the bank.
Tfui!
Persephone
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On Tue, 17 Jul 2007 18:45:33 -0700, Persephone wrote:

No disagreements with ya at all.
Here's an article about another lower-cost alternative to feed crops for ethanol production.
Charlie
----------------------------------
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/07/17/2576 /
Why Milk Costs More Than Gas
Excerpt:
American ethanol is made from corn, and the more corn we use to feed our cars, the more expensive is the corn left over for our livestock. Ergo, No Milk Today.
If ethanol we must have, we could import it from Brazil, where they can make it cheaper from sugar cane than Americans can make it from corn. But Brazilian ethanol, thanks to the agribusiness lobby and a 54-cent-per-gallon import tariff, is kept out of the country.
Politicians of both parties, mad for winning elections in corn-growing Iowa, do not mention the cheaper Brazilian stuff. Their silence on lesser-cost alternative ethanol sources may help them please Midwestern agribusiness interests and just about nobody else.
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There is also nothing stopping us from growing more sugar cane here instead of wasting grain crops on biofuel. There are many sugar can fields in Louisiana.
Biofuel can be made from waste straw and weeds. Why the hell are we wasting food crops on it?
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Peace, Om

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wrote:

Because of SOBs, rich farmers, like two that I personally know, that have plenty of money to contribute to our US Rep, and get an ethanol plant built within our district.
Money talks and bullshit walks.
Course you knew that.
Charlie
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Charlie wrote:

Amen! choir here...........
rae
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And when I saw amerika you know it blew my mind.
Try finding that a line from a tune from 1969 +- 2.
Eric Burdon I thought however no luck yet.
Bill who thinks of musicians and actors as our spokespeople. Some stink some do not.
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William Wagner wrote:

that was a good dozen years before my time, but i'll see if i can help you find it.............. rae
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On Wed, 18 Jul 2007 10:31:52 -0400, William Wagner

And I think of actors and musicians, as people hired to entertain me, that's all, why would they think that they speak for me.
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You're listening to the wrong music then, friend.
And missing some good philosophy.
Chillout Charlie
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Because they interpret in a way I find entertaining. I do not take my cues from artists and actors. People who live in a quasi-fairyland aren't the same people I want feeding me information. I like them enough in their element, but that's about it.
--
Ann, gardening in Zone 6a
South of Boston, Massachusetts
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Twern't I, Billy. I did look it up on Amazon, I've never read it, and don't want to get into that particular bit - what the US gets into has nothing to do with my views on entertainers. It does seem as though the entertainers will determine their own causes, though, and ballyhoo them about like they're preaching the gosphel. I don't listen to anyone's gosphel.

I don't get it, Billy. If it isn't interesting, then it's not entertaining. It would be nice if education was always entertaining, but it isn't. Sometimes it's hard work to learn. That's the beauty of it. I don't need things interpreted for me, I'll learn about them on my own - then calm my mind with entertainment. See the difference?
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No, I'm not. I am definitely much more conservative minded than you. Note I didn't say that I am totally conservative, I think you can see by our other discussions that I'm not. Broad brushes and all.
I never once said there were no nice 'Moslems' (whatever they are, I know only the word 'Muslims'), nor that all actors are idiots. Putting words into my mouth to make me look bad? I expected better from you.
I am now done discussing anything political or worldly with you. Let's just stick to gardening.
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wrote:

Indeed it can. Misunderstandings are quite common. One wouldn't think so, but it is truth.
Charlie
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William Wagner wrote:

i can't turn up anything either. are you sure that's the exact lyric/phrase?
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Thanks for the effort. Perhaps Just "You know it blew my mind."
Bill
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On Wed, 18 Jul 2007 12:51:37 -0400, William Wagner
Here ya' go William, you were right about the artist.
http://www.oldielyrics.com/lyrics/eric_burdon_the_animals/new_york_1963_-_america_1968.html
And when I got to America, I say it blew my mind
Damn, brother....ya really locked my head up for a bit. I had to make a mission of it! :-)
Charlie
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