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Home country: USA
Current location: Georgia
Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
Number of posts: 35,811

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Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

An end to exile: Hemp’s bright American future

By Brooks Mencher

Industrial hemp somehow survived America’s narcotic age. Despite today’s uncertain politics and incomplete laws, it’s poised to become a major agricultural and industrial force. The manufacturing infrastructure is being built. Its penny stocks reflect hope, conviction and volatility. Research and development is under way, especially in construction materials and cannabidiol (CBD)-based medicines.

Oddly, however, hemp has been at a similar juncture before.

In the 1930s, hemp promised to change America. It had survived severe competition from cheaper fibers like jute, flax, sisal, abaca and vast quantities of imported Russian hemp. Technology had advanced and scientists had discovered that, besides rope, fabric and paper, hemp could be used in plastics, foods, fuel, dynamite — thousands of different uses from all parts of the plant: stalks for fiber; seeds for oil, hulls and mash; and high-cellulose hurds, the broken-up bits of the stem’s core, for making building materials and plastics. Henry Ford created a car whose body was processed from hemp; it ran on hemp ethanol. And hemp was sustainable, unlike America’s already vanishing forestland.

With a sort of nouveau Industrial Revolution at hand in the midst of the Great Depression, hemp was reintroduced with fanfare to the beleaguered American public by Popular Mechanics magazine, which had found in Cannabis sativa linneaus America’s industrial salvation: farm jobs, manufacturing employment, raw resources, innovation and independence from imports.
In February 1938, the magazine dramatically predicted that hemp would become America’s “New Billion-Dollar Crop,” a forecast linchpinned to a new version of the decordicator, a machine that separates fiber from the rest of the plant. Hemp, said Editor Henry Haven Windsor Jr., could produce four times the amount of paper pulp per acre as a forest, and it could be done every year as opposed to every 20.


Weekend Toon roundup











'NY Times' Columnist Laments Woes of Rich Kids

Are you sick and tired of the poors getting all the attention and sympathy? Are you afraid you might end up living near scary, thuggish brown people? Then don't miss New York Times columnist Ron Lieber's work!
Let's start with the travails of those woebegone rich people and their kids, using the murder case of Thomas Gilbert, the 30-year-old trust-fund baby and Princeton grad who murdered his father when his father cut his allowance.

Twitter responded as Twitter does. He was a “trust fund kid.” The “most spoiled brat.” The whole affair was “morbidly disgusting.”
But at the same time, parents all over my own social media feeds and in out-loud discussions throughout the week were having a more searching conversation.

So uncouth Twitter was making fun of the situation, but his rich friends were like, "woah, that's just like us!"

Before you roll your eyes and mime the playing of violins, let us dispense with the nasty term “rich people problems.” The well-off are human, too, and if some of their children are hurting, it’s indecent to mock or ignore them.

Ha ha, no, it's not. When your 30-year-old Ivy-League grad is living off mommy and daddy and getting an allowance, that's perfectly mockable, no matter how much that asshole moocher and his idiot-enabling parents are "hurting." Ignoring them would be too kind.



"The Dream Of Reconciliation"- Next week's New Yorker Cover

Barry Blitt drew next week’s cover, inspired by the photographs of the Selma-to-Montgomery march that are everywhere again. “It struck me that King’s vision was both the empowerment of African-Americans, the insistence on civil rights, but also the reconciliation of people who seemed so hard to reconcile,” he said. “In New York and elsewhere, the tension between the police and the policed is at the center of things. Like Trayvon Martin and Eric Garner, Michael Brown and Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos, Martin Luther King was taken way too early. It is hard to believe things would have got as bad as they are if he was still around today.”


Hitting it out of the park again

BART protest in San Francisco closes stations, limits service

Source: SFGate

BART closed the Montgomery and Embarcadero stations in downtown San Francisco on Friday morning as activists swarmed the system to protest against police brutality. As of 8 a.m., trains were running through the two stations without stopping.

The Montgomery station reopened at one point before BART closed it again. BART police officers made at least two arrests.

Activists said they wanted to shut down the stations to call attention to what they believe is the unfair prosecution of 14 protesters who have been charged by Alameda County prosecutors for allegedly halting BART service by chaining themselves to trains and each other at the West Oakland station.

Friday’s protest began at 7 a.m. at the Montgomery station. Organizers encouraged people to bring metal spoons, and protesters were banging the spoons against walls as the demonstration kicked off. BART police were on the scene.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/BART-girds-for-protest-at-Montgomery-Station-6020069.php

Friday TOON Roundup 3 - The Rest

Toons and Terror

“They Murdered My Idols”






Friday TOON Roundup 2 -Poisoned Party

Friday TOON Roundup 1 - Oh, No, Not Again!

Charles P Pierce - Congratulations to my new friend from Iowa

To hell with the Oscar nominations -- American Sniper? Really? -- this is the real announcement of the day.

Ernst, who beat Democrat Bruce Braley decisively in November, told reporters she is "humbled and honored" to have the opportunity to deliver the address. The announcement was made at a Republican legislative retreat in Hersey, Pennsylvania. She won national headlines during the campaign for her ad "Squeal," in which she noted that her upbringing on a hog farm offered her expertise in "how to cut pork."

My new friend Joni gets the big spotlight under which "Bobby" Jindal withered, and Marco Rubio was parched? This is beyond fab. Truly, it is. My guess is that we will hear very little about Agenda 21, the secret UN plan to steal all our golfs, and very little about nullification, and very little about those moochers on Medicaid, or very much of substance on any issue currently bedeviling the nation, because my new friend Joni doesn't do issues any more. Not since she realized that: a) she doesn't know a lot about most of them, and b) what she does know about them is generally both wrong and exceedingly unpopular, not to mention batty, but that she could get elected to the U.S. Senate regardless. But, make no mistake. She's not going to fall into the orchestra pit, the way Jindal and Rubio did. She is going to be prepped to the nines, and she is going to come across on TV because she comes across on TV. By the end of the speech, Bill Kristol is going to be taking Sarah Palin's photo out of that heart-shaped frame by his bed, and even the gang on MSNBC, led by L'il Russ, who's already half-gone on the woman, will be telling us what a "superstar" she is, and how charismatic, and, maybe by next Thursday, it will be noted by someone what a pile of weightless banality the whole speech was.

See, here's the thing. Joni Ernst is a box of rocks. She's a jumped-up state legislator whose worldview is that of somebody waiting on hold to speak to Steve Deace on the radio. This will be the case even if she manages to get through her "response" next Tuesday night with more aplomb than those old has-beens, Jindal and Rubio. Resist any attempt to make a star out of this woman. Believe your own lying eyes. It's very important.


Twin Brothers Film Themselves Coming Out to Their Dad in Emotional Video

Twin brothers Aaron and Austin Rhodes had come out to everyone in their family except for their father. But as rising YouTube stars, known as the Rhodes Bros, they decided they needed to tell him before he learned the news from their videos.

As the camera is rolling, they are both so nervous (“I think I’m going to pass out,” said one), crying a little bit as they struggle to get the words out.

“I just don’t want you to not love us anymore,”Austin says.

But the father reassures them that he will still be there for them. “Oh stop it,” he says, “It’s the way things are. You know I love you both. That will never change. You have to live your lives.”

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