Thanks to the Republican congressional climate change deniers and greed, the American public is facing a hidden tax of substantial bucks and much sooner than later. It’s all about an extremely precious commodity that rarely rates a mention in the daily rush of media lead stories, headlines and yes, Internet sites. And yet without it, you die. Automatic. You don’t get this stuff within roughly 3-5 days; the grim reaper pays you a visit and guides you to your new home, six feet under.
By now, many of you have guessed that commodity to be water. You would be correct. Drought, brought on by global warming, is eating into nature’s supply as well as numerous corporate greed factors. Our water delivery infrastructure is also older than Betty White in most places, but unlike Betty, it’s crumbling and will soon need to be extensively repaired or replaced. And lurking behind their mahogany desks is a new breed of Romney-type moneygrubbers…private water barons. Ready and willing to charge a king’s ransom for privatized water or already in the business of selling you bottled water, oft-times little more than a plastic bottle of tap water gilded by a fancy label. Even companies whose products have nothing to do with water, can siphon off hundreds of thousands of gallons in the course of their manufacturing process. Desperate cities will often deeply discount water contracts and build free infrastructure as part of their incentive package.
For the life-sustaining privilege of household running water, we pay an average of about $350-$500 per year. Earlier this year, a CNN Money report estimated that water rates would double, even triple within the next 25 years. That means $1,000 per year or much more to keep the wet stuff flowing. That’s a hidden tax.
There are an unceasing number of global horror stories. I’ve already recommended the documentaries Inside Job and the 11th hour as must – pre November 6th viewing. Let me add one more to that illustrious duo. It’s a 2008 limited release documentary called ‘Flow: for love of water’. It was a big hit at Sundance and a New York Times reviewer gushed that it was “An astonishingly wide-ranging film. An informed and heartfelt examination of the tug of war between public health and private interests.”
You can buy the DVD, rent it or watch it for free at topdocumentaryfilms.com. The subject matter is global in scope revealing that a shocking 2 million people die around the world every year of water-born diseases. Flow also addresses the pathogens and bacteria , drugs, rocket fuel and chemicals in our water. The film points out that we not only swallow a lot of junk through our drinking water, but absorb much of it through our skin when washing up and showering. One more statistic; an estimated 116,000 synthetic chemicals are flushed down the toilet every year to surface water lakes and streams that serve as sources for municipal water supplies. That means that water is piped right back into your homes.
Now for the truly scary part. Scary enough to command a scary headline in an upstate South Carolina right-wing newspaper – “Drought intensifies across America.” The AP story not only reported on the widest drought in the U.S. in decades, but also the fact it shows no signs of abating and the intensity is increasing rapidly with 20% of the country now in its grip. Good God! Even the goobers are starting to get it. Or are they? We won’t know until the final November 6th accounting is in.
Five states are in the grip of a drought that is severe, or as AP describes it, worse. The states are Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska, all crawling with man made climate change deniers. Arkansas and Oklahoma are a mess as well. Oklahoma is the home of Republican Senator, Jim Inhofe, who says, with a straight face, that God is in charge of such matters and all is well.
Agricultural land percentages impacted by this drought have exploded. An example given was an Illinois corn and soybean farm that saw its acreage in extreme drought. A condition that went from 8% to 71% in ONE week. Much of the damage to crops is already done and with forecasts predicting more oppressive heat and little rain, things are at the crisis stage in a goodly percentage of America.
Of course the ‘damage is already done’ opinion comes from professional climatologists, weather experts with many years of academic study and perhaps decades of experience. Comparatively, what does Limbaugh, or your dumbass right-wing legislator or some pulpit politician, none of whom have even a droplet of scientific knowledge on the subject, know about climate change? Zip! But the goobers suck it in as long as Bob and Bruce can’t get married.
One of the impacts of what we were warned about for years and did nothing to address, is that ranchers are selling off their herds because there’s no grass or forage to graze on. And they’re selling these cattle in substantial numbers at a loss.
There’s an excellent site on rivers and streams that should also merit your attention. It’s americanrivers.org. Its an activist national organization trying to keep our rivers and streams healthy for citizens, communities and wildlife. To that end, there is an American Rivers presence in many regions of the U.S. The organization points out that the latest spending bill in the House (read republican) would “slash funding to programs that protect our rivers, wildlife and the places they call home.” AR adds that the bill would also block new pollution rules, reduce the effectiveness of the ones we have by reducing enforcement and put our clean water at risk. Credit these moves to virtually every Republican elected official and a handful of DINO’s.
Also locked up somewhere in the labyrinth of legislative hiding places for worthy bills is H.R. 2454, the Waxman/Markey American Clean Energy & Security Act (ACES). Reasonable legislators have been trying to get this one passed for the last 3 years to no avail thanks to the above-mentioned bloc of elected blockheads. The core intent of the bill is to curb global warming greenhouse gases. Its house passage in ’09 (prior to the nut-hordes arrival) marked the first time such a bill had been approved by either body of congress. No such luck in the Senate. Other goals were to achieve energy independence, create jobs in the area of clean energy and eventually become a clean energy economy. Apparently your 112th Congress is uninterested in all the above.
If this keeps up I’m going to grow a beard and start carrying one of those “The world’s coming to an end” signs.