Weeds and Industrial Farming…Turning Point

I just returned from the national meeting for weed scientists. It was a great meeting with a lot of excellent presentations. While a major emphasis at the meeting was on herbicide-resistant weeds, I was disappointed by the lack of emphasis on proactive resistance management.

In fact, a prominent weed scientist, whom I have the utmost respect for, made the statement that it was too late for proactive resistance management — that the cows had already left the barn. If he is right, farmers had better be on the lookout for a new profession. We must be proactive… in every field beginning this year. We can attempt to salvage what we have and go forward with a different approach.

The Article

The Book of Jobs

An interesting Vanity Fair article by economist Joseph Stiglitz.

I agree with much of his thought. However, there is a deeply profound question that he leaves unanswered. I think as an economist he does not address the implications of his article.

The question: What social ethic does the American society implement to transition to a new economy? In essence, Stiglitz, as an economist, examines the political economy. Our salvation, in my humble opinion, lies in developing a new economic ethic that integrates the human condition and the natural condition. Investments in environmental economics, preventative healthcare, agro-ecology, and information technology (‘meaningful’ social networks) will lead the way. We need a genome project of our social intellect.

Google and Privacy

If you use Google, and I know you do, you may have noticed a little banner popping up at the top of the page announcing: “We’re changing our privacy policy and terms.” It gives you the choice to “Learn More” or, another option, the one I’m betting most people followed, to “Dismiss.”

Who wants to read about what Google plans to do with all that information it has about us?

I, too, clicked “Dismiss.” That’s because the very idea of considering what Google knows about me can give me heartburn. And if that happens, I may want to Google “heartburn,” and then I’ll wonder if my insurance company will find out that I was searching “heartburn,” or, worse, that one day I will apply for a new insurance company and the side effects of having considered what Google knows will result in a denial of coverage. But I digress.

The Article

I Saw The Sign…

There’s a powerful new weapon in the war on obesity. It’s a technological breakthrough that may help millions of Americans incorporate exercise into their daily lives. It’s … a sign.

In a new study, researchers from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene placed simple green signs that read “Burn Calories, Not Electricity” next to elevators in three buildings: a three-story health clinic, a 10-story affordable housing building, and an eight-story academic building. Then they watched to see if more people chose to take the stairs.

The Article