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When Stupid Attacks

Sarah's picture
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Texas has for so long been an example of how not to do just about anything you cared to name involving state government, that tonight's news out of the State Senate really depresses me. Some years back, in a fit of uncharacteristic freeheartedness, the Texas legislature enacted a rule saying any Texas high school student who finished in the top 10 per cent of his/her graduating class was guaranteed admission to any state university. Evidently that's giving too much leeway to kids based on their intellect: today the Texas Senate voted to cut that rule so that only 60% of any freshman class could be made up of those graduates.

This on top of Governor Perry's visit to Lubbock to praise the strength of Texas' economy. He noted that Lubbock has both agriculture (we're the cotton capital of the state, and the peanut capital; with the PCA plant in Plainview connected to the salmonella epidemic, though, that's probably not the way to bet this fall) and Texas Tech (not to brag, but my alma mater's rapidly approaching the point where it's a legitimate, multi-campus university system). Oh, and he bragged about turning down the money to help with unemployment insurance via the stimulus package, then whined because our border with Mexico is "undefended". Grrrrrrrr.............

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caseyOR's picture
Submitted by caseyOR on

which "Top 10%" students get to be in the 60%? Will they draw names out of a hat? Will all the prospective students have a foot race? Will the first slots go to students who don't need financial aid?

I admit, I am confused by this.

Submitted by jawbone on

Grande has been put off, due to worries about, oh, Agent Orange type residual problems. The planned herbicide is known to last for more than a year, but there have only been rat studies as to its impact on humans.'

What do you know about this issue? Here's one post I read about it.

The herbicide in question is imazapyr. Like all broad spectrum herbicides, imazapyr efficiently kills most plants with which it comes in contact, even those not intended as targets of the herbicide. However, as Jay J. Johnson Castro, Sr., executive director of the Rio Grande International Studies Center at Laredo Community College noted, “Nobody knows the impact of imazapyr.”
SNIP
A report on imazapyr chemical’s history developed for the non-governmental group Alaska Community Action on Toxics (ACAT) found that imazapyr can persists in soil, groundwater and surface water for over a year. Although imazapyr is a known corrosive that can irritate the eyes, skin and respiratory system, numerous epidemiological studies have identified herbicides as a potential risk factor for Parkinson’s disease.
SNIP
The US Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced on March 6 that it has completed an environmental assessment of the Carrizo cane and concluded that the introducing reed-killing wasps, Tetramesa romana, is the best of a handful of potential solutions. [Of course, we've had many bad experiences from introducing new fauna to correct other problems....]

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

all, brought here (except the fire ants) for one purpose and escaped to create a host of new woes. Sigh. But if they're holding off spraying, I gotta figure that's a plus. Thing is, you know more about this than I do, although a glance at a link from your source suggests Carrizo cane is what's choking our local playas.

If so there's not much short of a range fire that'll dent it. Damn stuff destroys the habitat for fish and birds, too.

I live in the Southern end of the Panhandle. Look on that map, and my hometown's right below the I-27 marker. In fact, I live about three minutes from Exit 1. Map scales being deceiving, you might think the Rio Grande was close by; at its closest to me, in that upcurve below Fort Stockton, I'm a seven-hour drive from the Bravo. So getting a look firsthand is, um, not happening in my current financial condition, shall we say?

We have an ag industry here that broadcasts defoliants by airplane, to make it easier to harvest cotton with machinery.

I have no doubt whatsoever that some genius thought spraying poison along the riverbanks was a great idea. I would've thought Napolitano unlikely to take the "Agent Orange" route. Treflan in job lots would NOT surprise me, though, unless they've got some reason to believe it's not effective enough. Maybe they'll go with Roundup.

Far as Parkinson's, etc. -- why should they worry? They're not running the sprayers or drinking the water or eating the fish. They just care about taking cover away from the drug smugglers.

(Like the brush along the Bravo's the real problem anyway, cane or not. The problem's money and guns and a market for dope, and if we haven't figured out we can't eliminate the market via prohibition after, what, 40 years? then stupid strikes again. In spades.)

If they're smart they'll hire some folks to cut the cane and sell it for biomass to a fuel supplier somewhere... it grows back. The jobs would be steady for years.

Submitted by jawbone on

media was covering this. Maybe there's more coverage in the areas local to the proposed areas for herbicide use.

I'm impressed that the US, at least based on what Hillary's saying, is admitting our role in the massive increase in guns getting into Mexico.

Appreciate you info.

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

somewhere to the right of the late Paul Harvey. Fox is considered liberal here.

In the Valley it's better but I can't get their signal this far north. In New Mexico it's better, but their signal doesn't do me any good in Randy Naugahyde's district.

I would direct you to the Burnt Orange Report and its blogroll. South Texas Chisme, if anybody does, will have something on this from a political angle; you may be better served to hunt it from an agriculture / wildlife angle.

Sorry not to be more help; the thing is, dude, Texas is frackin' huge. We actually do cover more land mass than California (even if you iron it out flat). Fort Worth, the nearest big blue enclave, is a five-hour drive; El Paso is eight, and the Valley takes all damn day, even in the summer.