“People say they’re stealing American jobs. Find me one person who wants to work as hard as they do,” said Amanda Odegaard. Odegaard is the business manager for Hilltop Dairy just outside Elkton, South Dakota. The majority of Hilltop’s 24 employees immigrated from Central and South America. Felipe Huerta emigrated from Mexico in the early 2000s. He has worked at Hilltop for 14 years. He started on the milking floor and now is the farm’s breeder. [Spanish-speaking immigrants help revitalize rural America]Yes, socialized agriculture, socialized dairies, socialized cheese, socialized livestock production, a socialized timber industry, socialized air service, socialized freight rail, a socialized nursing home industry and now a socialized internet are all fine with Republicans in South Dakota but then they insist single-payer medical insurance is socialized medicine.
We could be cashing in on all the snow we get here. Let's build snow melting plants and get water pipelines to California or Nevada where the drought is severe. We have oil pipeline from Alaska to Texas. We could do the same with snow: WATER THE NEW OIL..But Kristi Noem will think I am on Meth to suggest that idea. [Baka Bagoubadi]Good idea but it’s not really new. In 2011 an interested party wondered whether compressing snow into ice and loading it onto flat rail cars might work. The capacity of the Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River is 27,000,000 acre-feet.
If East River would either carve ice out of the James and Big Sioux Rivers, load it onto side-dump railcars or pump flood water into tank cars, or both, then dump it into the Colorado's closest tributary, the Green River in Wyoming, South Dakota could sell that water to Las Vegas and Phoenix. [interested party]Instead of empowering communities to harvest snow melt and rain water rural communities continue to be dependent on politicians who exploit need.
Diesel fired portable snowmelters are the most popular models since you can move them from site to site as self-contained units. Current portable snowmelters come with a debris catch area with baskets for manual removal of debris - even during operation! The SND5400 is designed for the airport market and other large-scale users. It economically melts 180 tons of snow per hour (based on latent heat of ice). [Snow Dragon Snowmelters]That’s about 5421 gallons per hour and a rail tanker holds about 30,000 gallons. An acre-foot of water is almost 326,000 gallons.
A pipeline to carry water to Aberdeen from the Missouri River would cost upwards of $271 million, but state and federal funding options are available. The potential 104-mile pipeline would draw from the Missouri River at Lake Oahe near Mobridge and pipe it to the city's water treatment plant. While the report recommends using cement mortar-lined steel pipe, Doug Mund from Bartlett & West said there is currently a surplus of welded steel pipe available because of recently canceled oil pipeline projects. "A few months ago, there were 1,000 miles of pipe available," he said. "We can see a significant pipe savings between surplus and regular price." Using that surplus pipe would put the estimated cost around $291 million. [Aberdeen American News]
Bonanza Creek Ranch is about ten miles from our place as the raven flies. It's home to a 24-building town, five interior sets, a herd of movie star longhorns and is surrounded by an unobstructed 360-degree vista. We drive by it every time we go to the San Marcos Feed Store.
Rick Pallaziol has made a living leasing prop weapons for 30 years. He stopped leasing real guns to movie clients in the 90s. "Protocols aren't enough," he said. "Someone has to be really afraid at every given moment that the gun is going to go off." https://t.co/cSMIWxc7eO— Gabriella Borter (@gabriellaborter) October 22, 2021
Sources told the Los Angeles Times crew members had been promised compensation for hotel rooms in Santa Fe but were told within the first days of filming they instead would need to stay in Albuquerque and make the hourlong commute to Bonanza Creek Ranch, just south of Santa Fe, twice a day. The dispute came as members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, including those in Santa Fe, were planning to begin a nationwide strike Monday. IATSE was arguing, among other things, that crew members were forced to work excessive hours with few breaks. The strike was called off Sunday when new negotiations were scheduled, according to a news release from IATSE. A post circulating on social media, purportedly from a member of the Rust camera team, said, “the entire camera crew walked off that morning.” The post, which said Thursday’s shooting “was not an isolated incident,” said the crew members wrote resignation letters citing “everything from lack of payment for three weeks, taking our hotels away despite asking for them in our deals, lack of COVID safety” and gun safety concerns. Nearly seven hours after they left — and were replaced by nonunion workers, according to the Times and the social media post — 911 dispatchers in Santa Fe received a call reporting Hutchins and Souza had been shot. ['Rust' crew members raised safety concerns before fatal shooting]More on the film history of the Bonanza Creek Ranch linked here.
Planning is underway to burn 676 acres of land surrounding Wind Cave National Park’s developed area this fall and 669 acres adjacent to the Elk Mountain Campground next spring. The project area includes dense and open ponderosa pine forest with a grass understory. Ignition will take place through the utilization of ground resources and the primary carrier of fire will be grass. “Prescribed burns help reduce the threat of wildfires and allow firefighters to better protect homes and structures,” said park superintendent Leigh Welling. “The primary objectives of this burn are to reduce fuel loading in the ponderosa pine forest and to decrease encroachment of young ponderosa pine onto the prairie, improving the flow of water into the cave.” This fire represents a continuation of the park’s prescribed fire program that began in 1972. Prescribed fires maintain the balance between forest and prairie, remove the build-up of dead fuels which reduces the chance of a catastrophic wildfire and rejuvenate the native prairie grasses. [Wind Cave plans prescribed burn]Wind Cave is home to nine species of bats, including the threatened northern long-eared bat, one species most impacted by White-nose syndrome or WNS—a fatal disease caused by the fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans. The fungus was detected on a western small-footed bat (Myotis ciliolabrum) in South Dakota in 2018. It's believed insects contaminated by industrial chemicals and pharmaceuticals in water supplies are weakening immune systems and spreading WNS to bats as part of the sixth mass extinction.
With the upcoming retirement of Friends of a Legacy (FOAL) Executive Director Marion Morrison, leaders of the nonprofit organization knew it would be tough to replace Morrison’s dominant force in leading efforts to preserve and protect wild horses and their habitat in the McCullough Peaks. FOAL is also active in working with the BLM on a fertility-control vaccine for the herd, to ensure the wild horses’ numbers don’t overwhelm the habitat. [Filling big horse shoes]The cost of keeping feral horses in holding pens off wild lands costs taxpayers at least $49 million annually. Wyoming has the second-highest feral horse population in the country with at least 7,144 of these critters. The BLM’s target is 3,725.
Of the roughly 4,300 horses the BLM expects to capture, approximately 3,500 will not be returned to the range. The agency began operations on Oct. 7 and had gathered 285 — 138 mares, 63 foals and 84 stallions — as of Sunday. Four fatalities were recorded during that period. And while ranchers want the BLM to remove the state’s wild horses, which compete with cattle and sheep for food, wild horse advocacy groups want the agency to expand protections and allow for larger horse populations. Often, neither side ends up fully satisfied. The revisions have not yet been approved, and the American Wild Horse Campaign expects to push back if they are. [Record wild horse roundup is latest development in yearslong resource dispute]The modern horse was introduced to North America by the Spanish late in the 15th Century and then by other European colonizers. Acquiring the horse in the 1740s enabled the Lakota to win the Black Hills.
No one contemplated wild horses overgrazing their ranges. Critical provisions for balancing horse herds with delicate desert landscapes were not considered or written into law. Now, we’ve learned how aggressive feral herds can be. Motion-activated game cameras at Mesa Verde National Park have filmed stallions successfully defending water holes against bull elk. The BLM has herd management areas across western states, including in Colorado: the Piceance-East Douglas HMA southwest of Meeker; the Sand Wash Basin HMA 48 miles west of Craig; and the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Range north of Grand Junction. There’s another BLM herd in Disappointment Valley formed when the market collapsed for horses no longer needed by the U.S. Army after the end of World War I. [Scourge of the West: ‘Wild’ vs. feral horses on public lands]In an era when western states are scrambling to preserve habitat for bison, wapiti, bighorn sheep, pronghorns, deer, the threatened Greater sage grouse and all the other wildlife at risk to the Republican Party how is running nurseries for introduced species like feral horses and burros either conservative or sustainable?
For example, in Northwest Colorado, Greater sage-grouse numbers rose approximately 10 percent last year. In the Sand Wash Basin, where nearly 60 percent of the Sand Wash Basin herd management area is sage-grouse priority habitat, sage-grouse numbers fell by 26%. Over grazing by wild horses in Sand Wash is having a direct impact on sage-grouse and other wildlife. [BLM STATEMENT ON SAND WASH BASIN HMA WILD HORSE GATHER]Clear the second growth conifers and eastern red cedar then restore aspen habitat, prescribe burns, begin extensive Pleistocene rewilding using bison and cervids, empower tribes, lease private land for wildlife corridors, turn feral horses from BLM pastures onto other public land to control exotic grasses and buy out the welfare ranchers Tony Dean warned us about.
(2/2) The BLM is currently soliciting information from potential sources capable of providing catch-treat-hold-release fertility control services for the Wild Horse and Burro Program, as part of our efforts to increase fertility control efforts. More: https://t.co/1AKWOf3ZHH pic.twitter.com/4IOlz88wHM— BLM WHB Program (@BLMWHB) September 30, 2021
It didn’t take Meade County commissioners long at all Tuesday to tell an out-of-state developer they didn’t want a wind farm in eastern Meade County. Scott Debenham, president of Debenham Energy of San Diego, Calif., had asked to be included on the commission meeting agenda for its Tuesday meeting. Debenham, speaking to the commission via phone, explained that the government is beginning to open Forest Service land for alternative energy development. “The last state in the country I want to emulate as far as energy is California. I am not going to vote for this proposal,” Commissioner Doreen Creed told Debenham. [Black Hills Pioneer]In 2017 a Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks study determined a single wind farm kills between 120 to 397 bats annually or about nine bats per turbine. Today, public lands are at risk to developers.
Well over $1 million is expected be spent on sensors and test towers to gauge the best placement for the wind turbine, Debenham said, but there are several considerations that will need to be born in mind as he works to find the best location across the four districts of the Black Hills National Forest. Debenham is open to locating his wind farm in the Bearlodge, Northern Hills, Mystic or Hell Canyon districts, he said, though each has its own benefits and drawbacks. “All of Chicago could be powered with this Forest,” he said of the scale of the proposal. He would also be looking for mining projects nearby, to which power could be supplied. In other words, he said, the company does not want to discover the presence of “a bunch of noisy, litigious people” after spending a quarter million dollars on the sensors. [Sundance (Wyoming) Times]Wyoming Game and Fish discovered white nose syndrome in bats roosting at Devils Tower National Monument in early May.
Biochar is produced by cooking organic material from agricultural and forestry wastes (biomass) in the absence of oxygen in a process called pyrolysis. Biochar sequesters carbon and got a boost during the Obama Administration so more applications for it are still being advanced by the US Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station.
According to a 2013 Argonne National Lab study the Black Hills National Forest is highly suitable for that type of harvest. But, as Jim Neiman shutters his sawmill in Hill City, South Dakota other timber harvesters are converting the kilns that dry lumber to biochar production.
If there’s a piece of wood out there, James Gaspard will probably take it. The 17 acres his company owns in Berthoud, Colo., is stacked with rejected trees from across the state. The beetle-kill branches and fire-scarred trunks wait to be fed into 100 massive kilns, which look like a fleet of rusty UFOs landing in the farmland below Longs Peak. His company, Biochar Now, uses the contraptions to convert wood into biochar, a carbon-rich charcoal that can help soil retain water and nutrients. Products like biochar could provide the financial motivation for fire mitigation products, which reduce fuels but also creates massive piles of unwanted timber. [Colorado Public Radio]In Bonner, Montana retired Forest Service project manager Dave Atkins is developing his own biochar production concept with yard landing waste and timber too small for commercial harvest.
Atkins says creating biochar out of young, skinny trees can reduce wildfire risk by removing “ladder fuels” — flammable material that can carry flames into the forest canopy — from vulnerable forests without releasing stored carbon into the atmosphere the way pile burning, the more common alternative, does. Adding biochar to a hard rock mining site can reduce the acidity and heavy metal pollution associated with mine drainage. Applied to drilling pads, it can expedite revegetation efforts. Atkins says that nearly two decades after he first started learning about biochar, the pieces appear to be falling into place. [Montana Free Press]As it revises forest plans the USFS is preparing to burn slash piles on numerous national forests throughout the Mountain West.
A study from American University posed some concern for the cost of producing biochar and argued it could be difficult to measure how much carbon biochar was specifically removing from the air. The study estimated biochar could sequester 500 million to 2 billion tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) at a cost ranging from $18 to $166 per ton. Much of that cost, the study read, would depend on the amount of organic material specifically grown for biochar production. “The potential and cost of using biochar at large scale remain somewhat unclear,” read the study. “Further research is needed to refine global and regional estimates of biochar’s cost and potential.” [Carlsbad Current-Argus]At least one company is converting waste from the cannabis industry to produce biochar.
Learn more about the US Biochar Initiative linked here.ip photo: mixed pine, fir and aspen stand after the 2011 Las Conchas Fire.
A November 2020 report by market research firm Southwick Associates found that water-based recreation along the Gila and San Francisco rivers supports roughly 5,000 jobs worth more than $92 million in income, and helps draw visitors to southwestern New Mexico who spend around $427 million each year. About half the respondents to Southwick’s polling said they would use the river more if it were designated Wild and Scenic. [River confab aims to ‘reengage’ community]
State Rep. Howard is currently Vice Chair of the House Appropriations Committee in the South Dakota Statehouse, and is also a member of the Joint Committee on Appropriations as well as the House Military and Veterans Affairs Committee. According to her campaign website, Howard received a B.S. in mathematics from SDSU, was commissioned as an Air Force officer through the AFROTC program at SDSU, and earned her jump wings at the US Army Airborne School at Ft. Benning, GA. She and her husband Mark were both stationed at Ellsworth AFB and have made their home in Rapid City for 28 years. [KNBN teevee]A Democrat has yet to announce but with some luck another principled conservative will get on the general election ballot while Taffy Howard makes Johnson burn off some of his funding stack.
In addition to drinking from bottles, babies could be ingesting microplastics in a dizzying number of ways. Of particular concern [is] a class of chemicals called endocrine-disrupting chemicals, or EDCs, which disrupt hormones and have been connected to reproductive, neurological, and metabolic problems, for instance increased obesity. “We should be concerned because the EDCs in microplastics have been shown to be linked with several adverse outcomes in human and animal studies,” says Jodi Flaws, a reproductive toxicologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, who led a 2020 study from the Endocrine Society on plastics. [Baby Poop Is Loaded With Microplastics]Read Occurrence of Polyethylene Terephthalate and Polycarbonate Microplastics in Infant and Adult Feces linked here.
Another Sunday serves up another story of serial savage sinfulness.
The leader of the Roman Church is slowly cleaning house of predators but is taking heat from Republicans for his stance on curbing human-induced climate change and from progressives for his decision to canonize colonizers accused of raping children. The international crime syndicate that is the Roman Catholic Church is funneling money from parishes and paying settlements or hush money for the sins of predatory priests. As lawsuits and the US Department of Justice swamp the religionist cabal the future of the pedophile cult isn't looking very rosy.
The inquiry found the number of children abused in France could rise to 330,000, when taking into account abuses committed by lay members of the Church, such as teachers at Catholic schools. The French Church has previously announced a plan for "financial contributions" to victims, beginning next year. [French Church abuse: 216,000 children were victims of clergy - inquiry]
Image, Michael de Adder.
Dallerie Davis, co-founder and artist liaison for the organization, said the project is in the concept stage and that Rapid City “absolutely, positively” will have a President Trump statue. “Right now, we know we’ve got to deal with the very unusual hair style, and we know we’ll have to involve tweeting,” Davis said. Davis said the City of Presidents has more than 80 street corners to choose from. [Rapid City Journal]
“I'm not a big fan of the guy. But on the other hand, I don't loathe him quite like so many people seem to," he said. "You've seen some of the fan art or, on the other side, some of the things that ridicule him. I didn't want to do that either way. So, I just, I just wanted to tell the truth about him, I guess.” No date or location is set for the unveiling of Donald Trump’s statue. [Bill Janklow's idea of public radio]Fact is: most of the downtown Rapid City statues depict slave owners, at least one child rapist, war criminals and figures in history that ordered the murders of American Indians so maybe the bronze of Trump should be placed right outside Murphy's Pub and Grill.
Spearditch bronze was cast in Santa Fe. https://t.co/DUCxtDKwBo— interested party (@larry_kurtz) August 18, 2021
Construction of the new Lt. Cmdr. John C. Waldron Memorial Bridge over the Missouri River is six months behind, project coordinator Denae Johnson told the Fort Pierre City Council on Monday. “We have geotech studies and we have to go off of those, but there are some subsurface variations that need to be accommodated,” Johnson said. “But there has been some extreme dry conditions that I think are definitely coming into play with this project. These drilled shafts are drilled down to about 134 feet, so that’s a lot of subsurface material to get into.” [Bridge construction behind six months, opening anticipated in mid-2023]
While the local museum depicts Moskee as a bustling hive of activity, the former logging camp has disappeared without a trace — today it’s nothing more than an open field along Interstate 90. On the road to the South Dakota town of Belle Fourche, a timber-frame coal tipple near the old Aladdin mine crumbles behind a barbed-wire fence, a sign warning of its imminent collapse. [Wyo loggers fear extinction as federal forest policy evolves]Dennis Knight is Professor Emeritus of forest management and ecology at the University of Wyoming and lead author of Mountains and Plains: The Ecology of Wyoming Landscapes.
First, the Black Hills logging industry developed a bad reputation in its early days. Something clearly had to be done. Wood production requires a long-term investment, at least to the end of the century. During this time frame, peer-reviewed research indicates that ponderosa pine forests will become less dense and less widespread in the Black Hills. Without planting, open meadows are likely to become more common (as seems to be happening in a large area following the 2000 Jasper Fire). I too have seen ponderosa pine growing like a “weed” in some places, but those dense patches of trees typically originated during a period of abundant seed and favorable climatic conditions for seedling survival. [The rest of the Black Hills forestry story]Neiman is currently logging within the Sioux Ranger District on a national forest named for a war criminal.
Powertech plans to appropriate 9,051 gallons of water per minute from underground aquifers that are also used to supply water to communities in Fall River and Custer counties. By comparison, Rapid City uses 2,551 fewer gallons per minute. [Rapid City Journal]Interested parties can sign a letter of concern at the Black Hills Clean Water Alliance.
In 2020, the finance, insurance, real estate, rental, and leasing industry added the most real value to the gross domestic product of South Dakota. That year, this industry added about 10.3 billion chained 2012 U.S. dollars to the GDP of South Dakota.The Council for National Policy has infiltrated Pierre and the extremist South Dakota Legislature because banks in my home state are hoarding nearly $4 TRILLION for its members including Robert Mercer, a CNP member and Long Island hedge-fund manager who bankrolled Donald Trump's presidential campaigns. According to accountant and former State Senator Susan Wismer (D-Britton) there are about $900 billion in 105 trusts alone.
Long before she became a fixture at NRA conventions, and years before she allegedly attempted to set up a back channel between the Kremlin and Republican officials, Maria Butina got her foothold in the US in South Dakota. Butina made Sioux Falls, the state’s largest city, her home base in the US for several stays in 2014 and 2015 before moving to Washington on a student visa. It was there that she got her first US cellphone, with a South Dakota area code, and wrote detailed observations of how American institutions worked, from local elections to college campuses. While the FBI has focused on “the groundwork that Butina and the Russian official laid to influence high-level politicians” in 2015, her time in South Dakota was mainly spent with average Americans. [Accused Russian Agent's Journey To Washington Began In South Dakota]Republican South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem addressed a meeting of CNP last August. Noem is also a graduate of the Koch Brothers' American Legislative Exchange Council or ALEC, an anti-think tank think tank that teaches how wedge issues raise campaign dollars for the nut wing of the Republican Party.
The U.S. government has condemned prominent offshore financial centers, where promises of discretion have long drawn oligarchs, business tycoons and politicians. But the Pandora Papers expose how foreign political and corporate leaders or their relatives moved money and other assets in recent years from international tax havens to even more secretive American trust companies, including those in South Dakota. [Key findings from the Pandora Papers investigation]
Local troops leaving to serve in Operation Inherent Resolve were wished farewell Saturday by friends and family. The activation ceremony for the 3rd Platoon of the 452nd Ordnance Co, an ammunition supply unit in the Army Reserve, was at the Strode Center on the Presentation College campus. Forty-six soldiers in the platoon will be deployed. Operation Inherent Resolve is the military's operational name for the intervention against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. [Aberdeen News]
Under its chosen alternative, when reservoir water levels allow, the Corps would request that Fort Peck Dam begin increasing releases in April to see if mimicking spring runoff will attract pallid sturgeon into the Missouri River. Beginning on April 16 — only when Fort Peck Reservoir’s elevation is at 2,227 feet and other downstream and runoff factors align — flows would be increased by 1,700 cubic feet per second each day until the peak flow at the Wolf Point gauge reached 16,000 cfs. That flow would be held for three days and then gradually decreased before being boosted in late May to 28,000 cfs. The peak flow would be held for three days, and then gradually decreased to 8,000 cfs and held there through mid-July. On the Yellowstone River, a tributary to the Missouri, the Bureau of Reclamation is reconstructing Intake Dam — an irrigation impoundment — to include a two-mile-long bypass channel in hopes pallid sturgeon and other native fish will have access to another 165 miles of river above the dam to successfully spawn. [Plan finalized to test boosting Fort Peck Dam releases to encourage pallid sturgeon to spawn]Nearly two dozen more species were declared extinct Wednesday.
“We ended up receiving five patients from the accident,” said spokesperson Kaci Husted. “And all five of them are still in house here with us.” “We’ve been operating above 100% of our typical capacity for several weeks now,” Husted said. “Somewhere in the 110% to somewhere in the 130ish% of our capacity range is what we’re seeing on a day-to-day basis.” Logan Health in Kalispell, Mont., – more than 200 miles from the accident – was at 94% capacity as of Monday morning and took in two patients from the derailment. [Boise Public Radio]Empire Builder passengers blame Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway for the derailment. In much of the Mountain West BNSF Railway owns the track bed over which Amtrak operates. Investigators believe speed was not a factor and that heat may have buckled the track. Passengers sign a waiver holding Amtrak harmless.
I'm glad to see the tracks have safely reopened, and I'll remain in close contact with Amtrak and the NTSB as this investigation continues.https://t.co/ApnfrIM1Zx— Senator Jon Tester (@SenatorTester) September 28, 2021
Harding-Perkins-Butte-Northern Meade Co Plains-Rapid City-Custer Co Plains-Pennington Co Plains-Fall River-Oglala Lakota-Sturgis/Piedmont Foot Hills-Southern Meade Co Plains-Hermosa Foot Hills-including the cities of Buffalo, Lemmon, Bison, Belle Fourche, Faith, Rapid City, Folsom, Box Elder, Caputa, Wall, Ardmore, Oelrichs, Pine Ridge, Oglala, Kyle, Sturgis, Piedmont, Summerset, Ellsworth AFB, Union Center, Hermosa, Buffalo Gap, and Fairburn: extreme weather conditions and very low moisture content of grasses, and other dry organic material on the ground, indicate that critical burning conditions exist. All fires have the potential to become large and spread quickly becoming erratic with extreme behavioral characteristics. [National Weather Service]Ash and soot from wildfires in the Siberian taiga are accelerating the loss of Arctic sea ice driving more frequent and deeper polar vortexes and soon the Yellowstone supervolcano will finally put South Dakota out of its misery.
In North Dakota's Cass County the Latino concentration has doubled since the 2010 Census and in McKenzie County it is up over 1000 percent. Overall, in North Dakota the number of people who self-identify as Latino or Hispanic has gone over 33,000.
What do these climate refugees and migrant workers have in common with their Midwest counterparts? Christianity. "Pro-life" is simply code for white people breeding. African-Americans terminate pregnancies at about the same per capita rate as white people do but don’t take their jobs. Latinas, however, have fewer abortions per capita and the extreme white wing of the Republican Party knows it's hemorrhaging jobs to Latinos.
And as the Republican Party caves on immigration after Governor Kristi Noem said she won’t accept Afghan compatriots in South Dakota wage slaves could make real social justice change by walking off their jobs then calling for a general strike and bring Kristi to her senses, too.
Graphics lifted from the Timber Lake Topic.
This week, thousands of Haitian migrants set up camp in Ciudad Acuña, Mexico, just across the border from Del Rio, Texas. Photojournalist Toya Sarno Jordan has documented their search for a new life on the border town. https://t.co/zsBJrTKxwe— NPR (@NPR) September 25, 2021
Time is running out for a recall effort aiming to kick Cowboys for Trump founder Couy Griffin out of office as a county commissioner in southern New Mexico. Supporters of the petition drive in Otero County say they still need to collect several hundred additional signatures by next Wednesday to trigger a recall election against Griffin. The petition accuses him of failing to attend commission meetings, using his elected position for personal gain in promoting a support group for [Donald Trump] and violating state restrictions on gifts to public officials. Separately, Griffin is facing misdemeanor criminal charges in the Jan. 6. insurrection on the U.S. Capitol, where he appeared on an outdoor terrace and tried to lead the crowd in prayer. The recall petition highlights Griffin’s pursuit of travel reimbursements from taxpayers in Otero County for a cross-country trip in 2019 that culminated in a visit with Trump at the White House. [Associated Press]In a video posted at his Faceberg account Griffin invoked now dead domestic terrorist Lavoy Finicum who helped vandalize the Malheur Wildlife Refuge in 2016. The Mescalero Apache Tribe banned Griffin from their lands after he made racist and derogatory statements at his Faceberg page.
“You could look at 2020 as the nadir of American democratic processes, or you could look at it as a dress rehearsal,” says elections expert Rick Hasen. I say: IT WAS A DRESS REHEARSAL. Our way of life is on the line. Tyranny awaits. https://t.co/2eHDLll0bK— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) September 26, 2021
Throughout Dead Epidemiologists—some of which was written while he was afflicted with Covid—Wallace mercilessly attacks the complacency and fecklessness with which establishment scientists and politicians responded to the virus; he also surveys the damage that the pandemic has wrought on the bottom rungs of society. The book is poignantly dedicated to three meatpacking workers who died from Covid-19, and Wallace describes their barbarous working conditions in detail. But the book’s chief concern is the origin of the SARS-CoV2 virus, and Wallace works backward here, from the outbreak to the bat cave. To fully grasp why we’re living in an age of pandemics, one must first understand how industrial agriculture and deforestation work in tandem. The H5N1 bird flu and the H1N1 swine flu emerged from poultry and hog farms, whereas Ebola and Covid-19 emerged from wild animals. All are the result of zoonotic spillovers—when pathogens that originate in animals cross over to humans and then mutate in ways that allow them to spread to other humans. Wallace defines an agroecological system as one that is “tied to the state of the surrounding landscape from which resources are continually drawn (and returned).” [The Unemployed Epidemiologist Who Predicted the Pandemic]
I-25 traffic gridlock drives Front Range passenger rail as Meow Wolf Denver opens Convergence Station
The city of Colorado Springs is hiring a consultant to determine where a new train station could be built to serve a proposed Front Range rail line. Before asking for money, the state will have an operating and financial plan in place, said Spencer Dodge, Southwest Chief and Front Range Passenger Rail Commission Liaison at a meeting of the Colorado Rail Passenger Association on Friday. Jill Gaebler, a rail commission member from Colorado Springs, said the Martin Drake Power Plant site could make sense for a new train station stop since it is right on the tracks and it is already publicly owned. "We need to start being strategically thoughtful about funding a new mode of transportation now, before we have absolute gridlock," she said. [Colorado Springs, CDOT preparing for Front Range rail ahead of possible tax ask]Combined with some $5 million it has set aside, $1 million from the State of New Mexico and a $5.6 million federal grant Amtrak is conducting track and infrastructure improvements for the Southwest Chief between Los Cerrillos, Lamy and Trinidad, Colorado.
More than 110,000 tickets have been snapped up in Denver, with all weekend days sold through October and most weekday tickets sold for the first two weeks of operation. Interest in the other locations doesn’t seem to be easing, either. In Santa Fe, the House of Eternal Return has sold more than 256,000 tickets since reopening in March, and at Omega Mart, 600,000 tickets have been purchased since its February opening. [Meow Wolf Denver: Creativity on a fast track]It's not in President Joe Biden's rail plan but if someday Amtrak, Colorado's Democratic congressional delegation and the Southwest Chief & Front Range Passenger Rail Commission connect the Chief at Pueblo or Trinidad to the Empire Builder at Shelby, Montana through Denver and Cheyenne, Wyoming it would intersect the North Coast Hiawatha at Laurel or Billings, Montana.
Efforts to restore passenger rail across Montana’s southern tier of counties has been included in Wyoming’s own statewide rail plan for 2021, which could include southern links to Denver or Salt Lake City if fully established. “Wyoming state or local officials will partner with Montana agencies as appropriate to create a regional base of support for expanding passenger rail service on corridors that serve Wyoming and Montana,” the Wyoming Statewide Rail Plan suggests. [Wyoming plan notes Montana rail authority’s push to restore southern passenger route]
Yes, that's the Waldo Canyon Road between I25 and Cerrillos in the right side of the photo just across the Rio Galisteo from us! https://t.co/QqGvAqjzgR— interested party (@larry_kurtz) April 15, 2021