Friday, April 1, 2011
I remember when bankers were supposed to be the most conservative, sober, and law abiding of all of us, so naturally it comes as a shock when we hear about them doing things the rest of us would be slung in the clink for attempting. Lying to Congress, fudging mortgage records, front-running stock options on financial deals are just a few of the crimes I've read about and only one person, Bernie Madoff, has been charged and convicted. Meanwhile, judges in the US rule that evidence is not necessary to hold Guantanamo prisoners for the rest of their lives.
Another case that makes me believe I've stepped through the looking glass is the current situation with agri-business. When I was young the representatives of agricultural companies wore cheap suits and visited farmers once a year to sell seed and talk about tractors. Now we all know that Monsanto not only sells seed that is infertile so it can't be saved for the next planting but also sues organic farmers if any of their genetically modified products blow onto the organic farm next door. I actually had to read that one twice to see if I was understanding what's going on.
Ah yes, then there's nuclear power. Supposedly it's as safe as houses but that's only if you were fortunate enough to not have owned a house on Japan's west coast last month.
The problem with writing about any current current affairs is that there's no logical place to stop and, as you well know, one could drown in lists of atrocities. At a personal level the only answer to this stuff is for us to keep in mind the truths we know to be real. Bankers are supposed to be conservative, farmers are supposed to take care of the land, and nuclear power is far too dangerous in a society whose rulers can't see beyond the next election.
Meanwhile, spring arrived in Halifax a few days ago and stayed long enough for us to walk along the shore of the beach park without our coats on Wednesday and dressed similarly through the university neighborhoods yesterday. Today we're having the first April blizzard. Ah well. Our walk was shorter than usual so I came home to bake a loaf of bread (it's a bit flat but tastes fine) and get involved in another drawing I may be able to show you soon.
In the meanwhile I grabbed a picture of an idyllic springtime scene painted by my hero Rudi Hurzlmeier. For a bit of further amusement to allay the news there's this:
They hate it when we laugh.