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The wicked witch of the west,
in the Wizard of Oz story,
is drought.

We're having a drought,
here in Kansas,
worse than the drought of the Dust Bowl days.

below the divider doodle.

Itzl AlertingAs you can see by Itzl's concerned look, this group is for us to check in at to let people know we are alive, doing OK, and not affected by such things as heat, blizzards, floods, wild fires, hurricanes, tornadoes, power outages, or other such things that could keep us off DKos. It's also so we can find other Kossacks nearby for in-person checks when other methods of communication fail - a buddy system. Members come here to check in. If you're not here, or anywhere else on DKos, and there are adverse conditions in your area (floods, heatwaves, hurricanes, etc.), we and your buddy are going to check up on you. If you are going to be away from your computer for a day or a week, let us know here.  We care!
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here we are again,
another bigjac Tuesday.

I'm posting events,
selected from
Chase's Calendar of events,
every Tuesday,
until further notice.

Plus a few items,
selected from other sources,
if I take time
to do so.

This is my new,
regular topic,
and here's the link,
in case you want to look for yourself:

Chase's Calendar of Events

the Chase's website changed.

It won't let me select all,
and copy and paste,
then edit.


I selected one item:

Here we go:

Birth anniversary of L. Frank Baum, creator of the World of Oz (1856-1919).
Let's take a closer look:


 However, the West, instead of being a wonderland, turned into a wasteland because of a drought and a depression. In 1891, Baum moved his family from South Dakota to Chicago. At that time, Chicago was getting ready for the World's Columbian Exposition in 1893. Scholar Laura Barrett stated that Chicago was "considerably more akin to Oz than to Kansas". After discovering that the myths about the West's incalculable riches were baseless, Baum created "an extension of the American frontier in Oz". In many respects, Baum's creation is similar to the actual frontier save for the fact that the West was still undeveloped at the time. The Munchkins Dorothy encounters at the beginning of the novel represent farmers, as do the Winkies she later meets.[30]

Throwing water on the wicked witch
melts her,
as if we can just throw water at the crops,
and all problems will be solved.

Not so.


Salinity problems are caused from the accumulation of soluble salts in the root zone. These excess salts reduce plant growth and vigor by altering water uptake and causing ion-specific toxicities or imbalances. Establishing good drainage is generally the cure for these problems, but salinity problems are often more complex. Proper management procedures, combined with periodic soil tests, are needed to prolong the productivity of salt-affected soils.

The following are farming methods
that represent
grasping at straws,
trying to feed 320 million Americans,
and feed them whatever they desire:


massive doses of bug killer

massive doses of weed killer

genetically modified organisms

massive doses of antibiotics

and the biggest one,
the foundation of factory farming in America:

all farm equipment powered by
diesel engines
burning diesel fuel,
which will run out,
around the year 2050.

300 million Americans will die,
at that time.

30 million will survive,
by farming in a different way.

Irrigation is not the answer
to the wicked witch of the West.

Thanks for reading.

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but even if not,
tell us about it.

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Comment Preferences

  •  g'day all; found this today about WWI munitions (15+ / 0-)

    Article disappointed me in that it did not mention the danger of any munitions as I remember when metal detectors became popular in the 70s and everyone hit the Civil War buffs started digging up the battlefields.  I remember in Richmond, several shells were discovered that were still "alive" potentially despite being buried for over a century and being black powder.

    If it will take several centuries to "sanitize" WWI battlegrounds after 100 years, how long will it take to "clear" countries like VN and Afghanistan?  

  •  Good morning. (14+ / 0-)

    Well bigjac we are definitely not in a drought.   It has poured the last two nights.   I mean absolute downpours.  Lightning and thundering for hours.   We got almost 6 inches of rain in total.   Unfortunately the water came through the bottom of the patio door, and went into the family room.   Luckily, we saw it and cleaned out the leaves that were covering the drain, outside the room, before more came in.   We sopped it up with towels.   We may get more rain today.

    Going to my beading group this morning and food shopping this afternoon.

    Have a good day.

    I dream of a world where chickens can cross the road without having their motives questioned.

    by broths on Tue May 13, 2014 at 04:45:18 AM PDT

  •  good morning all (13+ / 0-)

     photo ranchoguayama3a109.jpg

    300 million Americans will die,
    at that time.
    30 million will survive,
    by farming in a different way.
    ideas for "farming in a different way"?
    at least you have me motivated to get out in the garden

    It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see. ~ Thoreau

    by newpioneer on Tue May 13, 2014 at 04:49:40 AM PDT

  •  Happy Tuesday (14+ / 0-)

    and going on 18 months into my bereavement, all of a sudden I can't sleep again. I wonder what this is about. The past three nights I've averaged probably 5 hours a night.

    And it's already 71 at 4:30 AM here, on  it's way into the 90s. Dry, dry, dry, because California isn't getting much moisture either.

    Seneca Falls, Selma, Stonewall

    by Dave in Northridge on Tue May 13, 2014 at 04:50:03 AM PDT

  •  Good morning! (12+ / 0-)

    I have to disagree that irrigation is grasping at straws. Irrigation has been around since ancient Egypt and has worked well, when it's done right. The problem is that we're adding all the chemicals to the water with the bug sprays and chemical fertilizers.  I think irrigation should be done on a broader basis. Instead of building pipes to transport oil, we should be building pipes to transport water from flood zones to drought areas. Capture the flood waters from one area and release them more slowly in areas that need the water. We can add water purification systems to the pipe line at prescribed intervals. If we do it right, we could set it up so that as flood and drought areas move, we could change the direction of the flow to even things out. It's either that or create a Star Trek style weather control system. Either way, it would create a lot of jobs, both to build and maintain, helping the economy, and it would help both flood stricken areas and drought stricken areas.

    Unfortunately, I'm not an engineer to design this, but it seems to me like it could be done if we can move tar sands oil from Canada to the gulf. Heck we may even be able to use the movement of the water as a power source as well, at least enough to make it self-sufficient to run the pumps.

    Grocery day today so we'll be going out later, need to get canned dog food and laundry soap for one. We're also doing our sav-a-lot run this week, just not sure what day yet. We're supposed to get storms on Thursday, the next day Caedy is off, so it depends if it's storms all day, or just storms in the afternoon that we can run out in the morning. Otherwise we'll work it around her work schedule.

    "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

    by FloridaSNMOM on Tue May 13, 2014 at 05:53:03 AM PDT

    •  I like this idea (7+ / 0-)
      Capture the flood waters from one area and release them more slowly in areas that need the water. We can add water purification systems to the pipe line at prescribed intervals. If we do it right, we could set it up so that as flood and drought areas move, we could change the direction of the flow to even things out.
      Especially feeder lines going out from the Mississippi.

      And here's another idea. Instead of all that run off fertilizer going into the dead zone in the gulf, why can't we capture it to feed some aquaculture farms along the river.

      "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

      by LilithGardener on Tue May 13, 2014 at 06:41:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  as dave said, (10+ / 0-)

    it is going to be hot in so cal again today.  it was in the low 90's yesterday but a breeze came up in the early afternoon at my house and it was quite nice.  the new insulation i had done last year is working great.  it was 70 in the house yesterday morning and by late in the afternoon, it had only gone up to 74 while it was blazing outside.

    i have to go to a funeral today for the son of my housekeeper.  he died of cancer that he battled for over 2 years.  he was young and it is a tragedy.  i hope the service at the graveside will be short or else we will have little old ladies fainting all over the place. we girls bought a beautiful pot painted in a mexican motif and we planted a bromeliad, a fern and a zebra plant in it for her patio.  i almost never take flowers to a funeral, but instead give living plants.  i send the flowers while everyone is still alive to appreciate them and the plant to last afterwards.

    everyone have a good day.  keep cool, warm, dry, or wet, which ever applies to you.

    "I am an old woman, named after my mother. my old man is another child who's grown old." John Prine (not an old woman)

    by art ah zen on Tue May 13, 2014 at 06:31:50 AM PDT

  •  Good morning, all! (9+ / 0-)

    Had a great time on my little trip, but needed more sleep and the business kept me away from extra naps yesterday.  I need to get to the assessor's office for a while today, then I hope for a restful afternoon.

    It is cloudy and the rain is on and off, perfect for sleeping I think.

    Lilacs peeking out, asparagus sprouting enthusiastically!  We should turn the soil and be planting within about two weeks.  If I am up to it, I may visit the nursery for bedding plants today.

    Depends on how long I have to research at the assessors office. I am trying to keep the taxes lower for the next 4 years.

    If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. &

    by weck on Tue May 13, 2014 at 07:00:24 AM PDT

  •  Good morning. (8+ / 0-)

    Almost forgot to check in.  I am busy making Summer Squash Corn Relish. I made hot dog relish last night.  It is the end of the growing season here.  I have my last CSA pickup Saturday. My freezer is full so I had to find some canning recipes for all this yellow squash.  I ended up with 6 pints of hot dog relish. The recipe was made from yellow and zucchini squash, sweet pepper, Florida sweet onion and celery.  All of it from my CSA box.

    I had 3 bunches of celery.  The celery that is grown organically has very thin ribs but the biggest leaves.  I dried the leaves in my convection oven and ended up with 2 half pints of dried leaves.  They should last me a while for a cooking herb.  I also dried oregano, cilantro, dill and mint.  The mint I had to hang dry because it turned black drying in the convection oven.  I also froze mint, basal and sage.  

    I still have beets in the refrigerator that I need to do something with.  I made beet relish and it is made just like jam using liquid pectin. Years and years ago I won ribbons for this relish.  I have a fat chicken in the freezer that I can cook this week so I can make a little room for the beets. I am the only one who eats beets here so I freeze them and use a few for me to eat. Canning them is not a option because I would have to eat the whole pint myself in a couple of days.

    USDA put out a warning last Friday that dust bowl conditions worse then the 1930's for Kansas, Oklahoma, Northern Texas, Northern New Mexico, and Northern Arizona  to continue this summer. You are right in the middle of it bigjac3x.  Looks like no relieve until el nino brings rain in the winter. The government finely allowing hemp to be grown again which will be a environment plus for your area because it grows deep roots in the plains.  It also is a soil builder and don't need much water.  This will give a cash crop for farmers to move a way from GMO's.  Hemp is a natural weed and low maintenance.

    We will certainly learn to eat different in the next couple of decades. I know I have made major changes in the last decade on what we eat, mostly because it has become expensive.  I have meatless meals once a week now and use less meat in casseroles and soups. I know there are many who have been making the same adjustments to their cooking and shopping.      

  •  Rain, and a screwed up week. (8+ / 0-)

    I hesitate to brag about rain when so many folks are in such need of it, but we did get quite a soaking last night.  Up until now, most of the fronts have parted and gone around us.  I was afraid we'd be like two years ago when we kept ending up in the "dry tongue" while other north and south got the rain.  It's also much cooler for w few days, which doesn't hurt my feelings.  I hate for it to get too warm too soon.  Summer can be very long and plenty hot enough without having spring be hot, too.

    My usual schedule is to go to the senior center on M-W-F, but this week will be a mess.  The funeral organist is out of town and, though I really prayed for no one to die, we have two funerals this week on Wed. and Fri.  Doesn't look like they'll be anything strange but I don't do enough of them anymore to feel totally relaxed about it.  The $$ is good and relatively easy (WAY easier than weddings!) for what I have to do.  I'll be a happy camper at the end of the month with the extra $150 on my check.  :-)

    Going to lunch and then get groceries around noon, then I have a meeting tonight.  I may have to bring up some less than happy things, so I'm trying to get myself into a non-confrontational frame of mind.  I don't want to start out too strong until I see how people react.  Tact is not my long suit, so it'll be a challenge.  ;-)

    -7.62, -7.28 "Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly." -Langston Hughes

    by luckylizard on Tue May 13, 2014 at 07:20:39 AM PDT

  •  You sure do paint an (7+ / 0-)

    apocalyptic picture, bigjac!

    A really good book, IMO, on the dust bowl of the '30s is Timothy Egan's The Worst Hard Time, recounting the stories of several people who stayed on the plains through the whole thing, rather than take their chances in CA. It's beautifully written.

    Egan points out what most people know now, that drought wasn't the major cause, but rather poor farming practices - plowing up the prairie grass that held the soil in place in order to plant wheat, which was in high demand. FDR was fortunate to have Hugh Bennett, a soil conservationist, advising him - and FDR was wise enough to listen. Of course, when life improved, people tended to forget the lessons.

    It was supposed to rain a bit today here in the Hudson Valley, but it hasn't. It's just a little hazy. The lilacs are ready to bloom.

    Hope everyone has a fine day!

    •  USDA has made their advisory for this season. (4+ / 0-)

      The farmers and ranchers will be careful with the help of the Agriculture Dept.  They will probably leave some of it to fallow in grasses.  It will also depend on what water there is to pump out of the ground.  Many wells are low.  Next year they will be able to start growing hemp.  This is a good drought tolerant cash crop with plenty of industrial uses.  

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