When I was a kid, I remember seeing hundreds of butterflies, even in Michigan, which is not even on the migration path of these lovely, delicate creatures. In the last two decades the population of Monarch butterflies has gone down from 1 billion to approximately 30 million today, primarily because of the destruction of their main food source, milkweed.
The deadly culprit? Roundup, a herbicide made by Monsanto that is sprayed on crops to control weeds. Roundup contains an ingredient glyphosate, and the crops have been modified to make them resistant to the herbicide. Unfortunately, milkweed is not resistant, so it is destroyed with the other weeds, leaving nothing for the monarch larvae to feed on after the adult lays eggs.
Monsanto has pledged to support certain nonprofit groups and government organizations to restore milkweed in areas where there are no crops.
Monsanto also encourages a diverse group of public and private sector stakeholders to fully participate in the Keystone Policy Center Monarch Butterfly Collaborative – an effort to connect the agriculture supply chain with conservationists, farmers, scientists and landscape professionals from across the country to coordinate and scale solutions to the challenges facing monarchs and other pollinators.
Well that is admirable on one level, I still wonder if the use of a herbicide with glyphosate is good for our environment. This report says there are no significant issues, but it is a poison.
I couldn’t believe this quote from former Chicago Public Schools Chief Barbara Byrd Bennett who recently plead guilty to steering more than $23 million in no-bid contracts to her previous employers in exchange for millions in kickbacks. She said, “II have tuition to pay and casinos to visit.”
Then there’s the news about the Connecticut woman who sued her nephew for an accident in which she fell and broke her wrist. Jennifer Connell filed suit for $127,000, claiming her 12-year-old nephew caused the accident by an “exuberant greeting.”
Thursday, on the Today show, Connell said she was not happy with naming her nephew, but she was unable to sue the homeowner’s association directly and she had to name a specific person. She regrets having to do that. Okay, so she is not the aunt from hell that so many people labeled her on social media, but still, it was an accident. Accidents happen, and we don’t have to jump into the legal arena with every broken bone. And if she was merely seeking compensation for her medical bills, surely they did not amount to that much.
Okay, rant over. Whew! Now for some fun.
Friday’s Funnies – First this political cartoon from Jeff Koterba of The Omaha World Herald. Two politicians are standing in front of the House of Representatives, which is called The Haunted House of Representatives. One of them says to the other, “Maybe it’s not a new Speaker we need, but an exorcist.”
This is from the cartoon strip Get Fuzzy written by Darby Conley. Bucky Cat is talking to Robert, sharing new sayings that don’t exclude animals, The first one is, “Robert, to err is human to forgive is canine. In other words give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Feed them into a fish you go to jail.”
Bucky Cat concludes by saying, “My work is one small step for man, one giant leap for meerkat.”
Robert shakes his head. “Genius. Clearly you have seen further by standing on the shoulders of gerbils.”
The following quotes are not really funny, but they do make one wonder about some people’s intelligence.
Question: If you could live forever, would you and why?
Answer: “I would not live forever, because we should not live forever, because if we were supposed to live forever, then we would live forever, but we cannot live forever, which is why I would not live forever.” Miss Alabama in the 1994 Miss USA contest.
“Whenever I watch TV and see those poor starving kids all over the world, I can’t help but cry. I mean I’d love to be skinny like that, but not with all those flies and death and stuff.” Mariah Carey
“Smoking kills. If you’re killed, you’ve lost a very important part of your life,”
Brooke Shields, during an interview to become spokesperson for federal anti-smoking campaign
“Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country.” Mayor Marion Barry, Washington DC
“Half this game is ninety percent mental.” Philadelphia Phillies manager, Danny Ozark
“It isn’t pollution that’s harming the environment. It’s all the impurities in our air and water that are doing it.” Al Gore, Vice President
“I love California . I practically grew up in Phoenix.” Dan Quayle
“We’ve got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?” Lee Iacocca
“The word “genius” isn’t applicable in football. A genius is a guy like Norman Einstein.” Joe Theisman, NFL Quarterback & sports analyst
And in closing, I leave you with this great line from a book I recently read, The Undertaking of Tess by Lesley Kagen. Tess is talking about how her mother would react to her death, “She probably wouldn’t even cry if she’s already put her mascara on.”
What a great bit of characterization in that one line. Agree?
Do you have plans for the weekend? I will be busy with Trail Ride Weekend activities here in Winnsboro as part of our month-long Autumn Trails events. A parade, a barn dance, and lots more fun this weekend.