Friday, March 20, 2015

BC Media Weekly Wrap Up....

I've been monitoring Butte County Print Media for about a month now. Every Friday, I write a Weekly Wrap Up---to sort of summarize the week's activity. This is this week's edition:

Weekly Wrap Up: 3/20/2015

The Sunday edition of the ER looked more like the left-wing Nation Magazine judging by the letter-to-the-editor content. Two letter writers used heavy rhetoric to call the actions by 47 Republican Senators treasonous when they decided to write the Clerics in Iran, telling them to ignore the sitting President. Obama said that there is no precedent for such an action. The Chico ER's editorial board was mute on the topic; the CNR had addressed the topic... the week before.
A couple brave Right Wing letter writers jumped to the Republican Senators' defense. Both letters were entertaining, especially local Tea Party gadfly (and probable candidate for something someday) Loretta Torres who pretty much said Iran is trying to usher in some utopic golden age by building Nukes, which will result in the birth of the 12th Eman and the destruction of the US and Israel (or something like that, you have to read the letter to believe it).

Never mind the fact there are Christians who still think Hal Lindsey's interpretation of Middle Eastern politics is dictated in the Bible, culminating in the battle of Armageddon with Jesus finally coming back to build a new Jerusalem after Russia and China invade.

The other major issue was water. Both the CNR and the Chico ER had some very timid editorials, praising the area for meeting water use reductions and encouraging all of us to do more. Neither paper challenged the notion that agriculture is the single biggest water hog and that, perhaps, we should rethink the type of agriculture we pursue.

And much to my amazement, I found myself agreeing with the Crank of Durham, Gary Cooper, who generally writes a letter-to-the-editor every week. This week Cooper managed to bring up the unethical practice of farmers selling their surface water rights at a handsome profit and then using pumps to irrigate their crops from the Tuscan Aquifer. Just today I saw two drilling rigs in orchards that were putting in new wells (both in Tehama County). Farmers are getting ready to save their orchards. You can't blame them for that, but, perhaps it is time to consider that drought is the new norm and that we should be making the transition to growing row crops and not commit to orchards that need the same amount of water every year . No amount of consumer water conservation will make a dent in the impending lack of water without a change in agricultural practices.

Then there is the matter of salmon. They deserve their share of water too.

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