University of California

Heretics for Trump and Cruz?

Submitted: Jan 25, 2016
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

The doctrine these sects preach is Christian heresy. The Christian faith—as in the 1930s under Germany’s pro-Nazi Christian church—is being distorted to sanctify nationalism, unregulated capitalism and militarism. The mainstream church, which refuses to denounce these heretics as heretics, a decision made in the name of tolerance, tacitly gives these sects credibility and squanders the prophetic voice of the church... The retreat from radicalism—in essence the abandonment of the vulnerable to the predatory forces of corporate capitalism—created a spiritual void filled by protofascist movements that have usurped Christian symbols and provided a species of faith that is, at its core, a belief in magic. This Christian heresy is currently on public display at Donald Trump and Ted Cruz political rallies.

 -- Chris Hedges, Truthdig, Jan. 24, 2016

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Hanson's Obesifornia

Submitted: Jan 18, 2016
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 Our valley's reigning pundit on an ever widening range of issues is syndicated columnist Victor Hanson, a Stanford trained classicist from a south valley farming family who is also a long-standing Hoover Institution scholar and, if these were not enough credentials to be expert on almost everything, he helped found a program at Fresno State to teach Latin and Greek. He is also author of Mexifornia, which pretends to be a brave moral stand against Mexican immigration.

One of Hanson's minor themes is the obesity of Mexicans. He goes on and on about the health and economic threats this Hispanic obesity entails for Californians, but never seems the least bit curious about why or how such a situation developed. This leaves us with an assumption that Mexicans suffer from some dietary perversion peculiar to their "race" and if not proactively starved by nutritionally concerned ruling classes, they just get fat.  

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Humanity doesn't deserve Nature

Submitted: Oct 26, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 Suppose, contrary to nearly universal public opinion, humanity doesn't deserve nature. Man is destroying ecological system after ecological system, extinguishing species after driving them into habitat corrals, constantly encroached upon by agricultural and housing development. The only way the story of the global environmental crisis makes sense is once hope is removed from reflections on it.

Every day is the New Day!

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There are no Crocodile Dundees in the San Joaquin Valley

Submitted: Oct 21, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 We are always happy to hear about our state Legislature getting out and getting exposed to educational influences. The poor dears are in the Capitol for so short a time -- thanks to the concerted, successful efforts of California's dominant corporations to impose term limits on legislators -- that it should always be reassuring to all Californians whenever our legislators are getting educated. In the case of their trip to Australia to study how that country has dealt with droughts, we ought to be especially grateful to the funders of this trip, the California Foundation on the Environment and Economy, an organization composed of termed out state legislators and lobbyists (for whom there are no term limits) from the energy and development "communities," and the building trades unions. 

This is a fine example of one of the basic assumptions of California leadership: Every day is a New Day! Why go to the abundant public record that exists on all aspects of the state's water supply and study, or at least have members of your staff study, what California has done in times of drought? How much more glamorous to go to Australia!" And it looks better on the resume than dropping by UC Davis for a workshop.

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The contribution to global warming of artificial fertilizers

Submitted: Oct 01, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 Fertilisers, especially nitrogen fertilisers, require an enormous amount of energy to produce... Faced with this dilemma, the fertiliser companies have moved aggressively to control the international debate on agriculture and climate change, and to position themselves as a necessary part of the solution.

 -- GRAIN, Sept. 30, 2015

 

 

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The Bobcat guzzles the KoolAid

Submitted: Sep 28, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 In vain once again, as we often have since the arrival of the University of California among us, we ask what sort of questions, if any, the faculty of UC Merced are asking as they lavish their attention on the Sierra Nevada (or not so much nevada lately).

We have watched them flirt with social issues, discovering that Hispanic youth prefer to stay at home when going to college. They solved that problem by importing Hispanic youth from Los Angeles.

There was the global warming period, when UC Merced did important original research on cow farts. There was even a time when the mission of the campus was seen as mainly in the Humanities. 

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Questions about the Delta and global warming

Submitted: Sep 01, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

We've assembled over the years enough articles on drought, California water and global warming to fill several books. Our aim was to inform and raise questions. As the drought grows worse -- news of larger forest fires and more dry wells -- lately the media seems to be trying to project a sense of perspective at this point. But they, and the politicians they quote and the scientists they paraphrase do not appear to be doing a very good job.

We wondered, for example, if it would destroy public confidence in the wisdom of The Interests  (finance, insurance and real estate) in California, if we dared to say global warming and the San Joaquin-Sacramento Delta in the same sentence.

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American taxpayers will bail out California agribusiness for how much?

Submitted: Aug 21, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 The press is beginning to toss around figures of the billions lost by California agribusiness due to the drought. The current figure is $1.84 billion to agriculture alone, total costs around $2.74 billion.

Estimated losses to migrant labor are harder to find because los trabajadores internacionales migrate elsewhere in times of drought. Their "anecdotal information" is almost always more accurate than the professors, but they don't care about gross figures. If at all possible they will avoid becoming part of " the ripple effects to the entire economy." They aren't as tied to California real estate as a UC professor is, probably because they can't access UC's great low interest loan programs for professors and administrators.

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Israel will teach us how to manage water

Submitted: Aug 11, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 It was precisely because of this Israeli innovation that the governor, Jerry Brown, welcomed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to California in March 2014. During a ceremony in Silicon Valley, the two leaders signed a memorandum of understanding to foster cooperation and develop research with an emphasis on water conservation and management.

The memorandum calls on California and Israeli businesses, universities and laboratories to join together to find solutions to water scarcity. “Israel has demonstrated how efficient a country can be, and here is a great opportunity for collaboration,” Brown said.-- Madison Margolin, The Forward, July 2015

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Almond industry looking for a new market?

Submitted: Aug 05, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 “This research doesn’t respond directly to concerns about water consumption, but it does show that almond production in California has a light carbon footprint,” saidReid Lifset, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Industrial Ecology,“Almond orchards can be a source of renewable energy and, as perennial crops, they store carbon during their life cycle — significantly offsetting carbon emissions in other stages of almond production.” -- Kevin Dennehy, Yale News, Aug. 4. 2015

 

This research was supported by a grant from the Almond Board of California and a USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant. -- ucdavis.edu.

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