I guess it’s a sign of progress that Philadelphia Daily News columnist Stu Bykofsky decided to actually criticize a Republican today for our budget mess in addition to laying the blame at the feet of Democrats here (yeah, that’s more than a bit of a stretch – I belabored the point here that we ended up in this hole first and foremost because of profligate Repug mismanagement for most of this decade…”Byko” is opining here about the $17 billion cut by President Obama from his 2010 budget).
And, in the midst of some pretty relentless name-calling against Janeane Garofalo since she had the audacity to call the “teabaggers” out for the racists that they are (check this out), “Byko” ends up “want(ing) to kick myself – for not interviewing the handful of African-Americans I saw at the local protest” (I suppose a few attended, but I didn’t see any – if that isn’t a case of “Stockholm Syndrome,” then I don’t know what is).
But I wanted to take note of the following
(Iowa Dem Senator Tom) Harkin fought to keep a $1.8 million earmark to study how to deal with the odor from pig manure. (How about the stench coming from Congress, Tom?)
I realize that pig manure isn’t a big deal to Byko or most other people not living in the vicinity of a farm, but still, the following should be noted from here (in which Harkin objects to Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, who of course objects to the $1.8 million also)…
“I suppose we’ll hear a lot of jokes on David Letterman and Jay Leno and a lot of other people will be making jokes about this money for manure. But keep in mind this is not wasteful or an unnecessary or frivolous. This is very important in the daily lives in the people of my state, in North Carolina and every other place where we raise swine,” said Harkin, who pointed out that something in the neighborhood of 20 million pigs live in Iowa on any given day.
“In farm country manure and odor management are profound, serious challenges which can be mitigated through scientific research,” said Harkin, who pointed out that in Coburn’s state of Oklahoma the issue of pig odor led to a lawsuit by the governor against a neighboring state over animal waste – in this case from poultry.
“I ask the senator to travel in his own state, ask farmers and their neighbors about whether it is worthwhile to do research into animal odor and manure management,” said Harkin “If I’m not mistaken — and I may be here; I don’t know. if I’m not mistaken, I believe the attorney general of Oklahoma a few years ago brought a case, an action, I think, against their neighboring state, if I’m not mistaken — Arkansas — in terms of some of the effluent that was coming into Oklahoma. And this, again, raised questions of manure management, how it’s put on the land and things like that. And that’s what this research is about. People constantly complain, with good reason, about big farms, factory farms and their environmental impacts. So it makes good sense to fund research that addresses how people can live in our small towns and communities and livestock producers can do the same, and they can coexist.”
Besides, Byko, you should be more concerned about the stench emanating from North Broad Street instead, particularly every Friday and every other Thursday from certain editorial writers I frequently take to task. It still seems to attract my attention even after moving from the City of Brotherly Love a number of years ago.