Too good to be true?

Page 7 of 11  


Well, you might want to check on those Amerinds. They saw the value of a meadow in feeding large ungulates which fed them.
You must have gone to other places in the uplands than I. There the combination of latitude and altitude gave a boreal forest. Or peat bogs, which is pretty acid.
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George wrote:

Indeed. But those were small localized fires. Drought is rare in the East. Shade from the canopy kept temperatures on the forest floor humidity high and suppressed understory growth so that dead wood on the ground went from green timber to a sopping wet sponge usually without passing through a stage of ydryness that would promote fire.
An area recently denuded by an ice storm would allow the sun in to dry the fallen wood and allow the understory to grow

Yes, it would take a lot of potash to neutralize a peat bog.
Don't know where the uplands are, but have spent a fair bit of time in New England. The conifers there are mostly at the highest elevations, while down near the lakes decidious trees are more common. Deciduous trees also seem to be faster to colonize open space. Almost of the wooded land East of the Mississippi is second growth dating back to the early 20th century.
Were it not for silviculture, there would be a LOT fewer conifers in the Eastern US.
I'm not clear on where the uplands are.
--
FF


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Mark & Juanita wrote:

I believe you are the first person I have ever heard suggest that acid rain produced by polution local to the rainfall in question.
If I am mistaken about this, please elaborate a bit on what you think is causing acidic rain in the Northeastern US. -- FF
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On Sat, 02 Jul 2005 11:05:56 -0700, Mark & Juanita

Yeah, I don't go for the arguments that we must stop moving forward- all I'm saying is that sticking one's head in the sand is just about as dangerous as the "strident extreme" of complete denial. There are a lot of things we can and should do as inhabitants of the planet to make sure we leave the place in a decent condition. Most of them are common sense, and we've already got some good ideas floating around. We don't need to all recycle our cars and walk everywhere wearing sandals, but it's not a bad idea to carpool if you can, and get the most efficient vehicle that meets your actual needs. If a guy is hauling truckloads of bricks and lumber on a daily basis, then he probably needs an SUV. If that same person is merely hauling one person around, a compact car makes more sense. If they've got a large family but little cargo, a station wagon or minivan is more sensible than an armored troop transport. Simple stuff. When a local businessman gets nabbed by the DNR for the fifth or sixth time because he's dumping toxic waste into the storm drains, he should be shut down until he fixes the problem- not given a slap on the wrist because he provides a lot of tax revenue.
It's less a problem of what is actually happening with the enviroment than it is a problem of what is actually happening with society, once you cut through some of the BS. When people stop hiding behind insane opinions supported by plays on words and mindless yes-men, most folks tend to behave in a decent manner because they know they have to look their neighbors in the eyes when they get home. For a simplified example- if you own a company that produces widget X, and that process creates 1000 gallons of liquid chlorine waste a week, and you decide that the most cost-effective way to dispose of it is to dump it out into the grass behind your building, no one should tolerate you getting huffy and yelling about how the science is not entirely proven when the neighborhood demands that you stop it. But a slick spin doctor can turn even the most egregious offence into something that sounds reasonable to the average person, and that is the brick wall everyone keeps hitting thier collective head on. If we had a couple of retarded kids with limited vocabularies reporting the daily news, people would gag on on the clarity of the real evil we do to one another on a daily basis. Instead, we have some doofus with an MBA in business and a thousand dollar haircut arguing with wild-eyed one-pony pundits on CNN about what the definition of an obscure term is- while somehow completely ignoring the orginal issues. Every day yields thousands of classic examples of sophistry, but that's just how things are "done", I guess.
Less BS would really help the environment the most- it's getting hard to see anything with all those stinky methane clouds in the way. It's a good arguement for wind power- the hot air all around us could supply all the energy we need.... though the poison it drips in our ears is worse than any black-lung cancers from inefficiently burning coal, or completely sterile oceans. It doesn't destroy the greenery, it destroys our minds, and those are the things we cannot afford to destroy. Everything else can be figured out with a clear head and a little honesty.
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So zero economic growth requires zero population growth, and we achieve zero population growth by greater-than-zero economic growth.
Right. I got it.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Doug Miller wrote:

Historically, three most important factors to reducing population growth, in order of effectiveness have been shown to be:
1) Reduced infant/child mortality.
2) Improved general education (not indoctrination, the three R's, and job-related education) especially for women.
3) Improved access to birth control, especially for women.
Absent immigration, France and Italy would have negative population growth indeed, near the end of the 20th century they had the lowest birth rates in the world. Hmm, maybe conversion to Catholocism would help too.
There may be draconian measures that could reduce population growth but the three stated above, appear to be more than adequate, few people find them objectionable as a matter of priciple, and those that do number in inverse proportion to the relative effectiveness. Further, more draconian measures can backfire by fostering rebellion. I recall that a cow-orker helped his sister-in-law and her family emigrate from China to the US back in the 1990s. The couple had twelve (12) children all under the age of 18, some born during the period when childbirth in China was illegal, all born when having more than one child was illegal.
I don't claim to have a deep understanding of the whys but the reasons for the effectiveness of these factors seem to be:
1) Improved infant and child survival rates encourage parents to have fewer children and to invest more in those they have (which feeds back into the second factor.)
2) Improved education, especially for women, gives people, especially women, something to which to dedicate their time besides making babies.
3) Pretty much self-explanatory but the interesting thing is the greater effectiveness of the first too.
The principle obstacles to implimenting them seem to be that all three and the resultant reduced population growth itself serve to reduce the world population that is easily explaoitable for political and especially for economic purposes.
--

FF


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Well, last time a German fellow proposed that sort of thing, it didn't go well...
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wrote:

--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Morris Dovey wrote: ....

I think you overestimate this scenario extensively...for one thing, at present there are millions of acres of formerly-producing crop ground in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) that could, <IF> (that's the "big if" :) ) it were necessary and economical, be brought back into production for many of these ancillary crops as well as corn and soybeans. As for land "exhaustion", if there is any segment that is concerned w/ maintaining productivity of the land, it is we producers--after all, that is our <direct> livelihood, not indirect.
....
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Duane Bozarth (in snipped-for-privacy@swko.dot.net) said:
| Morris Dovey wrote: | .... || We can expect that as the cost of fuel rises, more and more land || will be given over to ethanol production - and other crops will be || sacrificed until a (shifting) economic balance is achieved. Soybean || derivatives (everything from livestock feed to plastics) will || become sharply more expensive. | || If the pressures to maximize ethanol production are sufficiently || high, we face the danger of taking a giant step backward to || repetitively planting the same crop on the same land until the || soil is exhausted. Should we get to that point, there will be || serious breakage - and the worst of it won't be in the corn belt. | | I think you overestimate this scenario extensively...for one thing, | at present there are millions of acres of formerly-producing crop | ground in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) that could, <IF> | (that's the "big if" :) ) it were necessary and economical, be | brought back into production for many of these ancillary crops as | well as corn and soybeans. As for land "exhaustion", if there is | any segment that is concerned w/ maintaining productivity of the | land, it is we producers--after all, that is our <direct> | livelihood, not indirect.
You're right, the scenario I presented assumed no major scientific breakthrough - and a prolonged "emergency" (as defined by folks in DC.)
The really sad scenario would be removing control of the land from those who have a sense of stewardship in favor of management by larger ("more efficient") organizations who aren't able to do much of anything well except make campaign contributions.
The Supreme Court's recent decision in the Connecticut condemnation case provides precedent for other cases that *will* affect family farms. The only questions are how many farms, and where, and for what purpose...
"National security interests" appears to have become a buzz phrase to justify even the most outrageous behavior. These days it even trumps principles like "due process".
I wish I shared your confidence and optimism.
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/solar.html
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Morris Dovey wrote: ...

No point in being "gloomy Gus" as Grandpa always said (and he made it through the Dust Bowl days in SW KS--right in the middle of some the most severely ravaged areas--and we raised some 60 bu/A <dryland!> wheat this year on that same ground.
The Court specifically allowed for States to set controls over such behavior and I strongly expect them to do so. Most midwestern states already have limitations on corporate farming altho istr that Iowa is not as strict as the "bread basket" states from ND to TX? I know there is more pressure in some areas in Iowa from increasing urbanization that isn't as strong farther west where it's drier. The key production limitation here continues to be water, which will become more so, even more limiting than fuel availability and cost.
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Duane Bozarth wrote:

[the behaviour in question being abuse of emminent domain to effect tranfer of ownership from one private party to another private party]

That's the problem, not the solution! Leaving it up to government to decide who may keep their property and who must sell it to another PRIVATE party is not only morally wrong it is also certain to result in land-usage that favors short-term monetary profit at the expense of anything else including what would be best for society in the long run.
Agriculture will never be able to lobby as effectively for a specific parcel of land as will 'developers'. The money to be made per acre per election cycle for 'development' will always be orders of magnitude greater than that made from agriculture for the same acreage over the same election cycle. duration of one election cycle. Now factor in the tax-revenue generated per acre post-'developement' as compared to that for farmland or, God forbid undeveloped land. Only that rarest of creatures, a politician acting for the best long-term interests of society, can resist all that.
--

FF


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snipped-for-privacy@spamcop.net wrote:

That's not the take I have....I fully expect public outcry to force legislatures to severely restrict the usage of eminent domain...
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wrote:

The decision for which, I will reiterate, was rendered by the *liberal* block of the Supreme Court with the collusion of the "moderate" Sandra O'Connor (moderate in this usage being defined as a liberal without the brazos to declare themselves so).

Your reference above had nothing to do with "national security interests" in the referenced case and everything to do with tax revenue and the ability to advance the cause of statism.
Actually, screwing farmers for the sake of "national security" is nothing new. Ask the heirs of some of the farmers during WWII who were "relocated" by Rocky Mountain Arsenal in Denver or some of the other military infrastructure needs at the time.

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Mark & Juanita wrote: <snip>

Can you elaborate on how O'Conner colluded with the "liberal" block in the Kelo case?
R, Tom Q.
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On Thu, 30 Jun 2005 10:05:17 GMT, the opaque Tom Quackenbush

Since -she- fielded the main dissention paper, it seems doubtful that he would be able to. O'Connor, Thomas, Scalia, and Rehnquist were the 4 Conservative(+ Mod) dissenters. The Libs pulled this one themselves and Souter is about to pay for it heavily. His land may be next. Is this justice, or what? http://www.freestarmedia.com/hotellostliberty2.html
The nasty Kelo decision and opinions of the justices is here: <http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/23jun20051201/www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/04pdf/04-108.pdf I'm surprised there haven't been any shootings yet.
- This product cruelly tested on defenseless furry animals - -------------------------------------------------------- http://diversify.com Web App & Database Programming
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On Thu, 30 Jun 2005 10:05:17 GMT, Tom Quackenbush

My apologies, the vote for the siezure case was 5-4. In this case O'Connor actually voted in the dissent; the original story upon which I based my comment above had indicated she was one of the 5. (No, it was an AP posting shortly after the ruling, so don't go "right wing whacko media here"). That was obviously in error and has since been corrected as a Google search just indicated.
My original rant was based upon that originally erroneous story and the fact that she has in the past sided with things such as upholding the reversal of first amendment rights in the campaign finance reform law decision. Given that occurence, I didn't question what I had originally read.

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Mark & Juanita wrote: <snip>

Ah. You'll probably be pleased to see this, then:
http://www.supremecourtus.gov/publicinfo/press/pr_07-01-05.html
R, Tom Q.
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Pulling land out of CRP is a *short*term* only 'fix'. *SMART* farm production involves carefully designed rotation of crops planted on a given plot *AND* the cycling of that land _out_of_production_use_ as a regular element in that rotation. *MOST* CRP acres are land that would be 'idled' even if CRP didn't exist.
You get more acres in production, *BUT*, over time (meaning 5 years, or *less*), due to degraded land quality from continuous use, yield/acre goes _down_. The effective increase in production is nowhere close to the increased acreage.
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Robert Bonomi wrote:

The last of those is definitely <not> true...well over half of the county in which I reside is now in CRP (including a sizable fraction of ours). The reason is only that it was an available option at a time when a significant number of those farming it were, as my Dad, at the age of retirement and the kids (including me) had left owing to various factors, a lot having to do w/ the great "land depression" after the Carter era grain embargoes that killed the small grain export markets.

No, the average production of the similar land still in production has actually increased dramatically since the time of the initial CRP put-ins. This is owing to continuing improvements in genetics as well as practices. Low- and no-till has had marked success in actually <improving> tilth as opposed to degrading it combined w/ decreasinginputs. Of course, the cultivation cycle <does> include rotation, including fallow periods. This is a mandatory part of an effective pest control strategy even without the consideration of fertility.
There is <no> chance that any significant numbers of people living on and farming it for a living will not continue to improve practices, not degrade them. It is economically required to survive as well as common sense. Plus, if my input requirements were to skyrocket owing to such practice, my friendly hometown banker would immediately demand to know why and put a stop to my endangering his collateral! :)
I've not and do not advocate widespread removal of CRP ground--I only mentioned it as it is there in quite large acreages and could, if circumstances were right, be returned to production. If the 2007 farm bill reduces the payout as much again as the last time, I think it will be inevitable that a sizable amount <will> be broken back out as it will not be feasible economically to maintain it with it not producing more than it would be at that point. I'm hoping it won't, but making long term plans just in case...
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