The Weekly Watch

Bloomin' Idiots

It's an orgy! Flowers are spreading their pollen far and wide. Perhaps plants go insane like breeding animals...thoughtlessly spending their energies in hopes that their pollen will land on a fertile stigma....caught in a sexual frenzy. To paraphrase Jimi, it's a yellow haze gonna kiss the sky. Flowers are attractive (for the most part), at least to some pollinators. Many pollinators are insects and they are disappearing, you know. In the cycle of life there is a time to create seed by blooming. Later in life, at maturity, is the time to sow seed. In recent years I've come to the conclusion that as a species, we never matured beyond the selfish infant stage (which might explain why we are such bloomin' idiots)...but evolution happens and there are pockets of growth and progress. Are the choices we have illusory, or can we direct our own development? What choice does the flower have?

pollen.jpg

I know I shouldn't be shocked that our collective hypocrisies and idiocy go unmentioned and unnoticed. I thought Bernie did a good job in his town hall asking about Saudi Arabia's last election after being grilled about Venezuela's election results (which he incorrectly described as flawed). MbS is a tyrant despot that the Trumpeteers support but elected president Maduro is a dictator who must go? And we know why we support the tyrant/absolute monarchy...
cause they buy lots of weapons.
...new data showing US arms deals with Saudi Arabia and the UAE are "dramatically understated" and billions more than previously reported. The data collected by arms trade watchdog Security Assistance Monitor (SAM) shows the US has struck at least $68.2 billion worth of deals with the two countries since they started their war in Yemen. "In fact, the weapons expenditure could have funded the United Nations’s 2019 humanitarian appeal for Yemen – which totaled $4 billion – 17 times over."

...and Yemen is the humanitarian disaster, not Venezuela
https://thegrayzone.com/2019/03/26/4-years-yemen-independence-us-saudi-w...
https://thegrayzone.com/2019/03/26/us-foists-humanitarian-aid-on-venezue...

And of course another reason for our support of the family of Saud is the petrodollar. But now the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is threatening to sell its oil in alternative currency if Washington passes the “NOPEC” bill, aimed at applying economic pressure to oil-exporting countries. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rdu-f5zJ-0Y (4.5 min)
https://www.rt.com/business/455607-saudi-petrodollar-oil-trade-nopec/ (text)

Other allies are looking elsewhere...
Italy endorsed China’s ambitious “Belt and Road” infrastructure plan on Saturday, becoming the first major Western power to back the initiative to help revive the struggling Italian economy. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-china-president-idUSKCN1R40DV

seeing idiots.jpg

When you look at our friends...they don't seem friendly. Not just Saudi Arabia, but Israel and Eygpt too..

Hypocrisy can be contra-strategic in addition to ethically unseemly. Throwing arms, cash, support, and the American name behind a military dictatorship, a theocratic absolute monarchy, and a corrupt, apartheid-like government, shames our nation and subverts safety. It is as indefensible as it is counterproductive. That Washington is able to do so demonstrates that either the public is utterly apathetic or completely powerless in the face of the corporate arm’s industry.

https://original.antiwar.com/Danny_Sjursen/2019/04/02/with-friends-like-...

Israel continues the Palestinian Apartheid...shooting protesters every Friday for the last year without a whimper out of the MSM.
https://electronicintifada.net/content/braving-israels-bullets-one-year/...
But ask Ilham, just mention AIPAC's influence and they go off the tracks...Here's why

https://www.opensecrets.org/industries/summary.php?ind=Q05&recipdetail=H...

The US is a weapons and war economy, but where is the conversation? A quiet whisper from Tulsi...a silent murmur from Gravel. As long as the corporations control the narrative we will not have the conversation. It always comes back to the profit motive... the straight jacket encasing the insanity.

We saw it this week when NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg addressed a joint session of the U.S. Congress fanning the fire of a 'Russian threat.' Peter Kuznick says it is an 'obscene bipartisan spectacle applauding war'; Pietro Shakarian discusses the self-serving NATO expansion and the hyperbolic Russia threat narrative (video or text)
https://therealnews.com/stories/obscene-bipartisan-applause-for-nato-in-...

Don't you love the myth of spreading de-mock-crazy...(video or text)
https://therealnews.com/columns/on-natos-70th-anniversary-important-to-r...

So as people debate and align and promote various politicians, no one even mentions the real elephant in the room...that US elections are RIGGED! (and it ain't the Russians). Sure would be nice if we had a legitimate system... (15 min)

Here's more specifics from Greg Palast and Lee Camp this week
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dl9y9wA4HlY (16 min)

bag of idiots.jpg

So sanctions, wars and coups...mainly for oil.
With two of the largest oil producers, Iran and Russia, under U.S. sanctions, all profiteering eyes of the west turn to oil rich Libya, says Vijay Prashad, the author of the book, Arab Spring Libyan Winter (video or text - 2 parts)
https://therealnews.com/series/bloodshed-in-libya

As the rate at which sea ice is melting in the Arctic accelerates, analysts have predicted unprecedented access to vast deposits of undiscovered oil, natural gas, and other natural resources. In 2008, the US Geological Survey estimated that the Arctic may contain 13% of the world’s undiscovered oil and up to 30% of the world’s undiscovered gas resources

https://www.thearcticinstitute.org/russias-arctic-strategy-energy-extrac...

Companies such as Google, Amazon, and Microsoft have triumphantly announced themselves as petroleum production partners, Gizmodo reporter Brian Merchant has documented in a recent report. (video or text) https://therealnews.com/stories/how-big-tech-has-helped-big-oil-automate...

...And why don't we act?
Fossil Fuel Trade Associations Spent $1.4 Billion on Ads alone in Past Decade
https://therealnews.com/stories/fossil-fuel-trade-associations-spent-1-4...

There are answers...nature is a self healing system. We just need to quit spewing poison into the atmosphere https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/04/03/bold-new-campaign-highlight...

idiots.jpg

So we run ever faster toward our own extinction?

Today it takes children to speak truth of our greatest peril. Adults are too absorbed in the practicality of profit margins and productivity to act for their own survival.

“We live in a strange world, where children must sacrifice their own education in order to protest against the destruction of their future.” (5 min)

Historian and energy researcher Simon Pirani likens this collective failure to act on climate change to the “collective madness” of World War I, in which old world imperial loyalties set loose the juggernaut of a mindless, pointless bloodbath
https://www.truthdig.com/articles/the-madness-driving-climate-catastrophe/

Another example of the insanity is the persecution of Julian, the truthteller, the week after the most obvious press failure since WMD's and 911...Russiagate.

Wikileaks claims to have obtained a 'press strategy' agreed on by Ecuador and the UK - in the event its founder Julian Assange is extradited to US. Rumours are circulating that he's about to be kicked out... and potentially handed by UK to US. According to Wikileaks, Ecuador will claim Assange broke the terms of his asylum - with the UK giving assurances it won't let US sentence him to death. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9z7dyyCGI6c (4 min)
Jimmy discusses the current situation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=poEJI9wMlVw (22 min)
There is a small protest outside the embassy
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6IsxBo_rjA (3 min)

bloomin idiot.jpg

This discussion of our idiocy could go on for a long time. We never discussed our failure to provide our citizens health care...https://truthout.org/articles/two-thirds-of-personal-bankruptcies-are-ca...

Nor our racist for profit prison system
https://www.texasobserver.org/author-shane-bauer-on-how-the-racist-roots...

I also neglected to cover the crazy situation with Brexit
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PS85zPQ1vuk (6 min)

There is no escape. Like the pollen, the idiocy, the insanity, surrounds us...the product of effective propaganda. Perhaps Greta, XR, Sunrise will be the blooms seeding a new era of cooperation with one another and our natural systems. We may still have a chance. Let's help them in every way we can. Because in some sense we are all idiots...

The Greek adjective idios means “one’s own” or “private.” The derivative noun idiōtēs means “private person.” A Greek idiōtēs was a person who was not in the public eye, who held no public office. From this came the sense “common man,” and later “ignorant person”—a natural extension, for the common people of ancient Greece were not, in general, particularly learned. The English idiot originally meant “ignorant person,” but the more usual reference now is to a person who lacks basic intelligence or common sense rather than education.

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/idiot

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Overthrow that "kingdom" that supports terrorists and pay them back for OPEC and 9-11.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Lookout's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

...and they would collapse. We might try that before outright war.

I do like to hear Tulsi call them out explicitly.

Sure would be nice if we had an honest conversation about 911 as well. http://911truth.org/
Might throw a wrench in the war of terror we promote world wide.

Hope your spring is unfolding nicely. I'm thinking you're in CO? We loved our trip to 4 corners a few years back...such a different landscape from the green hills of home.

All the best. Thanks for the visit.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout
It's starting to not look like Alaska. A robin appeared last week! Good to see her (must be a her, her body is so bloated, must be eggs). Just hope she doesn't take a fancy to the pink rubber bands holding my new grafts. Birds usually do. I have to figure out what supplier had the gray rubber bands, pink, green and blue attract birds.

I'll go along with your suggestions, but don't trust Trumpy for anything.

I saw on wikipedia that Calhoun County Alabama voted 67% for Trump. Then I read that it's 76% white, which means about 90% of whites voted for Trump as I doubt that any blacks or latinos did. They seem like nice people (mostly). Is it the water? Or just thoroughly brain-washed? Or just didn't like being called "deplorable"? My daughter that lives down there (born in Illinois) is to the Left of me, pretty much in line with gjohnsit. She once told me she was the only white Democrat in town.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Lookout's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

it would be the churches. Oops, I can't leave it at one....I've got to add sports and the obsession of competition - you know ALabama. As the many insightful southern writers attest....if you can break through southern culture you can develop the disciple of mind to think for yourself.

White dims are rare in the hinterlands these days (altho 20 years ago FDR's echo still existed), but plenty of them in urban areas. Sadly they are mostly Obummer fans. Any dim is a good dim...which is how we got Senator Jones (along with the help of new knowledge).

Our dim primary exit polls were 15% off from the results...so lots of cheating here.

How is your daughter adapting to the culture other than politics? Food is pretty good down here.

Edit to add: Calhoun co was home the old military base and reflects that in it's population. They probably have the best paper in the state...the Anniston Star ...or used to be.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout
Anniston Star is supposed to still be good.

Jones did well there I believe. Except for the ultra-religious my guess is that Southern women were turned off by the 30 year old lawyer dating a 14 year old girl. It's the foothills of the Blue Ridge, not deep in the mountains. With the right emphasis, I think a true Progressive would do well. Just don't use the S word.

My daughter tells me that she sees more interacial couples than in Illinois and they are mostly black men with white women, which astounds me for the Deep south.

I'm planning on moving there in a few years. Winter is getting bad. My wife slipped twice on the ice last Winter, taxes and costs are going through the roof. My retirement income (assuming Trump doesn't take it away) is slightly above the median family income there, but far below the median here. Besides, on;y we oldsters are left up here.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Lookout's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

...with an Alabama relocation feel free to pm me. I know the state....and a bit about GA too.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout
If I do, I will send a private message. More people are leaving IL but the two big destinations are TX & FL, probably for taxes. My wife hates Texas and we both hate Florida.
Hey, my grandparents left Europe, this is a smaller move.

I've read about the past history with the KKK and all. Horrible! But back in the '60s, a Calhoun County all white jury was the first in Alabama history to find a white m,an guilty of murdering a black man, so maybe times are changing. That was 50 years ago, now there is a museum celebrating the Freedom Riders.

I think there a lot of small Southern cities that need an infusion of cash from Northern retirees. I'd like to build a house, which will contribute to the economy.

I was born and raised in Cook County. I lived for a while in Virginia. If I never hear the word damnyankee again in my life it will be too soon, but I never heard it down there.
A friend of mine is a Civil War buff. He says Alabama never saw the heavy fighting that Virginia did. Janney Furnace was the only battle of note. They hold a reenactment every year. They just had one a week or two before. My oldest grandson is a gamer and loves the reenactment, like a video game played out. I told him he should contact the group that does them. he could always play one of the Union soldiers.

I do like Lynyrd Skynyrd (my daughter hates the band) and I love their rendition of "FreeBird". Been there three times an onlyonce did I hear comments about "outsiders" from a woman about my age. She didn't say "damnyankee" so I pretended not to hear. Her family tried to hush her anyway. There's always been a lot of racial/ethnic tension here in cook county. the rule is if one is outwardly polite, I don't care if inside you hate my guts.

Drivers are polite by Chicago standards (vie with New York for rudest and craziest). I do wonder if it's because no one knows if the other driver is armed.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Centaurea's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness on god's green earth that white people in Calhoun County, Alabama were ever going to vote for Hillary Clinton.

It's not just that she's a Democrat, because under the right circumstances, some of them would likely vote for a Democrat. It's because she's Hillary Clinton. We kept telling the Dems that Hillary was not electable. This is a big part of why it was (still is) true.

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"Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep."
~Rumi

"If you want revolution, be it."
~Caitlin Johnstone

I read the whole linked article and don't have a clue. Is Italy building highways in China? Is China building highways in Italy?

What's the significance of the sojourn in Palermo, capitol city of the Mafia?

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Lookout's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

'Belt and Road,' China's mega-project that is linking 70 countries across Asia, Europe, and Africa https://www.businessinsider.com/what-is-belt-and-road-china-infrastructu...

Italy became the first major Western power to endorse China's "Belt and Road"
https://www.euronews.com/2019/03/24/china-and-italy-sign-silk-road-project

Our allies are beginning to pivot as the Germans link to Russian gas with a new pipeline and Italy looks to China. Additionally China and Russia are more closely allied thanks to our mutual agression toward them both.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout
Everything old is new again. It's time for the East to dominate the West again.
That too shall change after a civilization collapse and rebirth. Yes, I know there is a chance of extinction instead of rebirth, but humans are adaptable apes, the most successful species on earth after cockroaches and norway rats.

No need to apologize. The linked article was long and should have defined the term.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Lookout's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

I just hope we can avoid a war over the collapse of one empire and the rise of another. I'm hoping for an economic collapse before world war erupts.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout
but history is not reassuring.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

Raggedy Ann's picture

All roads lead to China. The world, it is a changin’.

Thanks for the Watch. I look forward to it every Sunday. I don’t always comment because we’ve been slammed. Mr. RA works at a local greenhouse. March thru May, it’s 6-days/week and longer days, which leave you exhausted. A saving grace this year is the owner is teaming up with someone who is growing hemp and they are starting their plants. Since my husband has his medical grow license, the owner has been open to the plant. Mr. RA will discuss any issues he’s having with his plants and the owner has been keen to give advice. The owner also gets a marijuana growing magazine he gives to my husband after he reads it. Now, he’s put Mr. RA in charge of overseeing the hemp plants. The world is definitely changing.

So, Sunday is his only respite. Unfortunately it means it is also his only day for errands or whatever. Today is a restful day, so I’ve got my morning to enjoy the WW.

Have a beautiful Sunday, everyone! Pleasantry

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"The “jumpers” reminded us that one day we will all face only one choice and that is how we will die, not how we will live." Chris Hedges on 9/11

Lookout's picture

...but maybe it goes round and round

Throughout his lifetime, George Washington cultivated hemp at Mount Vernon for industrial uses. The fibers from hemp held excellent properties for making rope and sail canvas. In addition, hemp fibers could be spun into thread for clothing or, as indicated in Mount Vernon records, used in repairing the large seine nets Washington used in his fishing operation along the Potomac. At one point in the 1760’s Washington considered whether hemp would be a more lucrative cash crop than tobacco but determined wheat was a better alternative.
(2.5 min)

Always a pleasure. So glad you came by. Have a great day!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

smiley7's picture

@Lookout
Bear creek a few miles from the farm was named Hemp, before its name was changed in modern times.

Good day, Lookout. Thanks for today's watch; still nice outside, rain on the way.

Have a good one.

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Lookout's picture

@smiley7

It is 70 degrees and dogwoods in full bloom down here in the foothills.

All the best!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

QMS's picture

Think it was a movie about a dystopian future. Kinda cultish. But funny. The less conditioned we are to accept the stupid as a necessary reaction to games bering played, the better chance we have to see a better future.

Thanks lookout. You are a mind to be on the lookout for!

peace be with you

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Lookout's picture

@QMS

I don't mind following rules till they don't make sense or become a moving target.

Never have seen idiocracy, but did catch Maher's Religulus.

Hope you have a good day...it is lovely here. And remember, it's never too late to get in touch with your inner idiot!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

QMS's picture

@Lookout
A sing along with Sweet Honey in the Rock
Called "Chinese Proverb"

When there is...
LIGHT ~ SOUL
BEAUTY ~ PERSON
HARMONY ~ HOME
HONOR ~ NATIONS
PEACE ~ WORLD

question the rulers in the mind

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Lookout's picture

@QMS

I've seen them at a few folk festivals and they are great. Attended a singing workshop of theirs at the FL folk fest(?) years ago.

on we go - step by step
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXwM3pJFqAc

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

mimi's picture

@Lookout
I marvelled about the current discussion in Germany, to expropriate housing complexes for low income citizens, which were formerly owned by the government, who then sold those to private investors, who then raised the rent to highs nobody can pay and stand empty while at the same time thousands and thousands are looking for affordable apartments to rent.

Protesters rally against 'rental insanity' in large German cities

Rents have risen sharply in Berlin and other German cities during the past decade. At a Berlin protest, housing activists demanded the government hit back by expropriating real estate from big rental companies.


Housing crisis: The Berlin solution and the Vienna model
Angry Berliners have a radical solution, while Vienna has housing sussed - Sat, Apr 6, 2019, 06:00

I love me some dirty socialistic expropriation, I admit, as long as it is not a nationalist socialistic one. Meet my inner idiot.

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mimi

Lookout's picture

@mimi

to help people with housing and to create mixed communities. The US has a horrid homeless problem...people living in tent cities and under bridges.

Certain basics...home, health, employment... are all things governments should provide. Of course that would require a little sanity!

Hope all is well on your side of the pond and spring is unfolding.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

studentofearth's picture

Watched this recently and found it interesting. Might enjoy.

If don't have a full hour here are the segments.
3:02 to 13:07 Plants hunting or searching for food, example cuscuta daughter plant.
13:08 to 27:00 Plants methods of self-help and requesting help, example wild tobacco plant.
27:01 to 35:03 Plants fight for exclusive space, example spotted knapweed. (Personally fought this one for years.)
35:04 to 51:30 Plant family cooperation, example sea rocket and douglas fir.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

Lookout's picture

@studentofearth

I've been reading a novel about forest consciousness Overstory. Kinda fun.

Thanks for the clip and the visit. Hope all is well on your farm.

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magiamma's picture

And you all...

Going to a Buddha birthday ceremony up at the local zendo this afternoon. No idea. Many years ago I hung out with folks that were working closely with the Karmapa and consequently went to many tibetian ceremonies. Interesting but not one, much, for a lot of ritual. They ask me to come later this month and talk about the climate breakdown crisis bc they are as rabidly focused as I am. So that should be fun. K, odd idea of fun but it will be great to meet more folks who are working on this issue.

Thanks for the great round up. Planning on chilling today and look forward to reading a bunch of it.

Have a good one...

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Stop Climate Change Silence - Start the Conversation

Hot Air Website, Twitter, Facebook

Lookout's picture

@magiamma

Spread the word like plants spread pollen!

Have a good one.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

mhagle's picture

@magiamma

Been working like a mad woman on the garden all week and then on Friday, I and one teen helped friends lay 13 pallets of sod. Took us 10 hours.

Enjoyed both OTs today and wanted to share a link and get your response.

http://techhivemind.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/white-paper-booklet-c...

Got a bunch of emails from these folks this week. Interesting, promising, but appears to be for profit which gives me pause.

I have read about mushrooms cleaning up oil spills. What is your take on this?

Wishing you all the best. I am still exhausted! But it is all good.

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Marilyn

"Make dirt, not war." eyo

magiamma's picture

@mhagle
I looked at the website breifly. Will spend more time later. Thanks for the link.

An early mushroom-tech person using oil remediation is paul stamets / mycelium running from olympia wa. Don’t know if he was involved.

Some stites
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Stamets
https://fungi.com/
https://www.ted.com/talks/paul_stamets_on_6_ways_mushrooms_can_save_the_...

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Stop Climate Change Silence - Start the Conversation

Hot Air Website, Twitter, Facebook

Lookout's picture

@mhagle

By trees and the fungi. I also have hope for ocean capture....
https://www.pmel.noaa.gov/co2/story/Ocean+Carbon+Storage

I can (and do) plant trees. Just like not using plastic bags won't solve the islands of plastic, my tree planting won't solve carbon capture...but it is something....something I can do.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

Pluto's Republic's picture

Thanks, Lookout. Your links are a treasure chest.

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____________________
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
— Voltaire

Lookout's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Your comments around the site. So glad you enjoy the weekly!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

a "private person", not in the sense of one who did not hold public office, but one who did not participate in public affairs, either as an official or as a citizen. It was, from the outset, a pejorative term expressing contempt for those too selfish to fulfill their obligations to their community.

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The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

Lookout's picture

@UntimelyRippd

This week has been a pollen blast in the SE - 7000 ppm with one count - second highest recorded. So as I thought about this weeks theme it was on my mind (and everything else). The idiot piece provided some jokes (I hope) because the straight news is depressing and boring IMO. The news is such a shotgun that I like to have a theme around which I can couch the stories of the week... makes it more fun to write and I hope more fun to read.

Good to "see" you and hope all is well in the lab.

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Anja Geitz's picture

Been down with a cold and got to this thread late. So much good stuff here! Will read when I get home from work. Thanks so much!

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There is always Music amongst the trees in the Garden, but our hearts must be very quiet to hear it. ~ Minnie Aumonier