Sunday, May 01, 2016

Of Cows and Fools

Of Cows and Fools
The Gas that lasts
Lenin’s Birthday
By Stephen L. Wilmeth

            I love the sweet smell of cattle.
            The truism that man and beast smell of which they eat is fact. Cattle are best examples. Asa mentioned the other day he believes the most pleasant aromatic perfumery in the animal world comes from the outcome of oat hay fed to calves. He suggested he could also stand down wind in a Deming breeze, close his eyes, strike a dignified pose with vomeronasal receptors alerted, sniff, and make a good call on what his cattle have been eating.
Cattle aren’t just sweet smelling, though. They are also some of the most opportunistic beasts in God’s kingdom. It is amazing what they can eat and convert into muscle and sinew. In another life long ago, I remember a pen of Charolais calves at King City being fed a ration built around garlic silage. I swear I couldn’t walk up to the bunks from downwind and not have my eyes start watering, but those big steers just stood there and acted like it had all the equivalency of une experience culinaire exquise.
Chile is similar. We marvel at how weaned calves will get hooked on it and prefer it to free choice hay. Standing there chewing chile with their eyes closed in apparent contentment is the image they present.
Of course, the byproduct is embellished bovine sweetness with a hint of … roasted chile.
Earth Day
Although this year’s Earth Day occurred on April 22, the first one was celebrated in 1970.
It was a gala event that attracted free ranging flower children of all persuasions. They gathered and frolicked across the meadows, smoked doped, played music, and cheered at the doomsday spokespersons of renown. Harvard biologist, Georgie Wald, warned that civilization would end in a mere 15 to 30 years unless drastic measures were taken. He then got on an airplane and flew to Moscow to advise the Soviets on their environmental policies. He ultimately took home a Nobel Prize for all his great insight and learned concepts. All that can be remembered about Georgie today are the flaccid breasted, dying hippies that cheered his genius.
Speaking of genius, Stanford’s Paul Ehrlich declared the same year that mass starvation was imminent. This came on the heels of his book with the Sierra Club, The Population Bomb, which appeared in 1968. In that book, Ehrlich predicted mass starvation and the same collapse of civilization as his Harvard colleague. In 2009, he was confronted about his failed predictions only to insist the only flaw in his work was that it was too optimistic about the future. He was a stickler of the absurd.
In 1970, the scientific consensus predicted global famine would ravage the world as a direct result of population growth. Their models predicted the famine deluge would take root in India by 1975. By 1990, it would spread to Pakistan, China, and Africa. By 2000, it was expected to inundate South and Central America. North Texas State’s, Pete Gunter, gallantly predicted that by 2000 the entire world (except, of course, his civilized haunts) would be under full blown famine.
Even Life magazine got carried away in the Eco frenzy. They printed “solid experimental and theoretical evidence” points to “in a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution”. Furthermore, “… by 1985, air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching Earth by one half!”
Davie Brower, the first executive director of The Sierra Club hooted that “Childbearing (will be) a punishable crime against society unless the parents hold a government license.” Before his death in 2000, he remained true to his calling and his livelihood that “all technology should be assumed guilty until proven innocent.”
Another Earth Day 1970 Eco chanticleer and green hustler, Kenny Watt, predicted the world would run out of oil by 2000. He was seconded by none other than the Georgia peanut farmer himself, lil’ Jimmy Carter, who predicted in 1972 that oil reserves would be depleted somewhere around 1992.
So much for staking our future on all that 1970 Earth Day nonsense, eh? Each and every prediction from that forum turned out to be completely … bogus.
            The Gas that lasts
            The only air pollution that reduced the amount of sunlight reaching Earth that balmy day back in 1970 was the haze from all the dope being smoked as the flower children cheered their high priests.
            Regardless what the progressives tell us, the matter of mass starvation simply didn’t happen except where conditions of social upheavals occurred as a result of government manipulation and corruption. The stewards of the land remained innovative as they survived the political assaults, the absence of infrastructure investments, and the regulatory quagmires that should have forced reductions. It is interesting to note that one measure of the genius of American producers is the record year California charities had in 2015. Despite huge areas being left fallow as a result of a largely paper induced drought, a record 150,000,000 pounds of food were donated to the 6000 charities on the receiving end of the bounty. This year, 2016, will see increases beyond that number because food banks will now be allowed to accept dairy products, eggs, chicken and beef gifts.
            Even India, the ground zero expectation of widespread famine in 1970, has become one of the world’s largest exporters of agricultural goods. In fact, every country Gunter listed in 1970 as an area of looming famine and decreased output has experienced food production increases.
            Looming energy production declines has been another lie. There are more known reserves today in expanding energy alternatives than the world has ever known. The technology that brought fracking has changed the entire horizon of energy production. Extraction energy segments have prevailed against the best efforts by government to curb production and this certainly includes the United States.
Air pollution results are no different. In fact, the matter of air pollution is most interesting. According to the World Health Organization, air pollution has sharply declined in industrialized countries.
Air pollution in the form of greenhouse gases, however, has been the baton the newest generation of Earth Day hipsters has glummed onto to reorient their doomsday chanting. This gas mix, particularly C02, is the illuminated villain. Supposedly, it is driving global warming. The problem with that is the growing observed evidence of the fertilizer effect of CO2. The predictions have called for diminishing food production and browning of the middle latitude ecosystems, but the observed results are the opposite. With increased CO2 levels, there is expansion of greening and a bump in agriculture production. The data is suggesting there has been a 14% increase in production, and 70% of that increase is coming from the CO2 contribution. Implicit in this increase is the slowed expansion of world wide farmland which can be equated to a land mass savings of 17%.
That is a lot of rainforest.
Of cows and fools
 From the junk science that has predicted all the doom since 1970, cattle are being accused of producing 10% of the global greenhouse gas. The biggest component of their aromatic contributions to what is now being described as increased greening and agriculture production is CO2. The combination of cattle and their life giving CO2 expulsions, however, has not penetrated the approved topics list for Earth Day lectures. On the contrary, cattle remain the grand nemesis of the “ethically obliged” and the reactions toward the noble beasts is more akin to turning one’s nose up than Porter’s earthy, lip curling vomeronasal inhalations.
That leads us to a review of the day selected for this year’s Earth Day. Most self professed environmental economists in 1970 believed only socialist countries would protect their environment. It was no surprise, therefore, that efforts to turn a whole generation of young people to socialism was the only way to protect ol’ Ma Nature. So, April 22 emerges as a curious date.
It is Lenin’s birthday.                                                   
Since every other major prediction from the first Earth Day was an out and out corruption of ultimate truth, there is certainly no surprise that these modern day hippies would return to the alter of the world’s greatest opponent of property rights, markets, and free market pricing for the newest iteration of grand environmental fabrication.
The truth is socialist countries have been far more responsible for environmental degradation than countries where bastions of private property still remain. Lenin stripped those rights along with so many other human dignities. The irony of the juxtapositions cannot be easily dismissed.
And, on the basis of associating with cows or old hippies, there is no hesitation. I’ll take cows any day. Theirs is a life giving, unselfish contribution.
Most importantly they convert grass … they don’t smoke it.

Stephen L Wilmeth is a rancher from southern New Mexico. “Nothing has contributed more to society than the cow … maybe someday she’ll get her just recognition.”

Another interesting column with wonderful insights from Wilmeth, but...vomeronasal receptors and vomeronasal inhalations? Yes, I had to look it up. Here's an illustration: 

Just plain old nasal and smells would have done it for me.  Sometimes I think Wilmeth pulls these words out of his, well, here's another illustration:

LOL...or une expérience amusante exquise

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