Jan 28, 2012

Court rules organic farmers can sue conventional, GMO farmers whose pesticides 'trespass' and contaminate their fields

(NaturalNews) Purveyors of conventional and genetically-modified (GM) crops -- and the pesticides and herbicides that accompany them -- are finally getting a taste of their own legal medicine. Minnesota'sStar Tribunehas reported that the Minnesota Court of Appeals recently ruled that a large organic farm surrounded by chemical-laden conventional farms can seek damages for lost crops, as well as lost profits, caused by the illegal trespassing of pesticides and herbicides on its property.

Oluf and Debra Johnson's 1,500-acreorganicfarm in Stearns County, Minn., has repeatedly been contaminated by nearby conventional and GMOfarmssince the couple started it in the 1990s. A localpesticidecooperative known as Paynesville Farmers Union (PFU), which is near the farm, has been cited at least four times for violating pesticidelaws, and inadvertently causing damage to the Johnson's farm.

The first time it was realized thatpesticideshad drifted onto the Johnson's farm in 1998, PFU apologized, but did not agree to pay for damages. As anyone with an understanding of organic practices knows, even a small bit ofcontaminationcan result in having to plow under that season's crops, forgetprofits, and even lose the ability to groworganic cropsin the same field for at least a couple years.

The Johnson's let the first incident slide. But after the second, third, and fourth times, they decided that enough was enough. Following the second pesticide drift in 2002, the Johnson's filed a complaint with the Minnesota Agriculture Department, which eventually ruled that PFU had illegally sprayedchemicalson windy days, which led to contamination of the Johnson's organiccrops.

PFU settled with the Johnson's out of court, and the Johnson's agreed to sell their tainted products as non-organics for a lower price, and pull the fields from production for three years in order to bring them back up to organic standards. But PFU's inconsiderate spraying habits continued, with numerous additional incidents occurring in 2005, 2007, and 2008, according to theStar Tribune.

After enduring much hardship, the Johnson's finally ended up suing PFU in 2009 for negligence and trespass, only to receive denial from the district court that received the case. But after appealing, the Johnson's received favor from the Appeals Court, which ruled that particulate matter, including pesticides,herbicides, and even GM particulates, that contaminates nearby fields is, in fact, consideredillegaltrespass, and is subject to the same laws concerning other forms of trespass.

In a similar case, a California-based organic farm recently won a $1 millionlawsuitfiled against a conventional farm whose pesticides spread through fog from several miles away, and contaminated its fields. Jacobs Farm / Del Cobo's entire season'sherbcrop had to be discarded as a result, and the court that presided over the case acknowledged and agreed that the polluters must be held responsible (http://organicfood.einnews.com/article/1088-organic-farmer-wins-1-million...).

Precedent has now been set fororganic farmersto sue biotechnology companies whose GMOs contaminate their crops

The stunning victories of both the Johnson's and Jacob's Farm / Del Cobo against their chemical-polluting neighbors is huge, in that it represents a new set legal precedent for holding conventional, factory farming operations responsible for the damage their systems cause to other farms. And with this new precedent set, many more organicfarmers, for instance, can now begin suingGMOfarmers for both chemical and genetic pollution that drifts onto their farms.

ManyNaturalNewsreaders will recall the numerous incidents involving lawsuits filed byMonsantoagainst non-GMO farms whose crops were inadvertently contaminated by GM material. In many of these cases, the defendants ended up becoming bankrupted by Monsanto, even though Monsanto's patented materials were the trespassers at fault.

Be sure to check out the extensive and very informative report compiled by the Center for Food Safety (CFS) entitledMonsanto vs. U.S. Farmersfor a complete history of Monsanto's war against traditional American agriculture:http://www.centerforfoodsafety.org/pubs/CFSMOnsantovsFarmerReport1.13.05.pdf

But it appears that the tables are now turning. Instead of Monsanto winning against organic farmers, organic farmers can now achieve victory against Monsanto. In other words, farmers being infringed upon by the drifting of GM material into their fields now have a legal leg to stand on in the pursuit of justice against Monsanto and the other biotechnology giants whose "frankencrops" are responsible for causing widespread contamination of the Americanfoodsupply.

Genetic traits are highly transmissible, whether it be through pollen transfer or seed spread, and organic andnon-GMOfarmers have every right to seek damages for illegal trespassing when such transmission takes place. It is expected that many more organic farms will step up and begin seeking justice and compensation for damage caused by crop chemicals, GM materials, and other harmful invaders.

For too long, Monsanto has been getting away with suing farmers whose crops have become contaminated by Monsanto's patented genetic traits and chemical materials, and winning. Thankfully, the justice system seems to now recognize the severe error in this, and is now beginning to rightfully hold polluters and trespassers responsible. Monsanto, your days are numbered.

Sources for this story include:

http://www.startribune.com/local/126151483.html Learn more:http://www.naturalnews.com/033216_GMO_contamination_lawsuits.html#ixzz1kp9jVF00

How Rocket Stoves and Rocket Stove Mass Heaters Work! --- Magic Marker and White Board Talk

Part 1

Uploaded by vention4wh

Part 2

Uploaded by vention4wh

Ever wonder what the big deal is about rocket stoves is? I mean how is it better than a camp fire or a wood stove. In this video I try to explain the benefits of the rocket stove system, explain how it works and why it's so efficient. Then in the second video I show how the rocket stove can be adapted to heating your home by adding the mass heater component to the rocket stove system.  vention

Excellent Magic Marker and White Board Talk on How Rocket Stoves and Rocket Stove Mass Heaters Work! ... Great job of teaching principles...! 

"Magic Marker and White Board Talk" supplements the 
Rocket Mass Heaters - Book , and the excellent work of Paul Wheaton and others like Ernie and Erica Wisner explaining and showing rocket stove technology.

Podcast-104-rocket-mass-heaters-with-ernie-and-erica/ - Must listen to before building your first RSMH!

Rocket stove technology is great because it is very low cost,  efficient, effective, and environmental friendly, if applied appropriately. 

Rocket Stove Mass Heaters are a very good "grassroots" and "community" technology, and not easily commercialized, due to size and weight...  Monte Hines

Related Links:

Top Ten Perennial Vegetables

Perennial Vegetables - Organic Gardening - Plant Vegetables - The Daily Green

Let the Green Cheapskate be your guide to easy, cost-effective gardening this spring.
March 21, 2011

I've confessed before that my enthusiasm for gardening usually dies on the vine long before the first cucumbers of summer are ready to harvest. I'm always looking for easy ways to satisfy my green thumb and, of course, ways to get the most broccolis for my gardening buck. That's why I'm a big fan of growing perennial vegetables in my garden–plant them once, and enjoy the fruits (well, actually, vegetables) of your labors for years to come.

I'll always remember when the UPS man delivered a mysterious, rather dirty looking box to our new home the first spring we lived here. The box was carefully packed with damp sphagnum moss, the packaging material of choice for shipping the sacred Yeager Roots, a housewarming gift from my parents.

Other families pass down jewelry or antique furniture, but for the Yeager clan, the holy triumvirates of family heirlooms are root starts of asparagus, horseradish, and rhubarb. They are the direct descendants of the original Yeager Roots, dating back at least to my great-grandparents, and–family legend has it–much, much further. After all, my great-great-grandmother was a Lungfish (that was her maiden name, not her species, mind you). But I digress.

Although–unlike fruits–there aren't too many vegetables that are perennials, many of the ones that do exist grow in a wide range of climates and, once established, are low-maintenance enough even for a lazy gardener like me. They're also among the healthiest veggies for you, and they're generally inexpensive to purchase, if you don't come from a family with its own royal roots line. Here are my personal eight great perennial vegetables:

Related: Dozens of Smart Gardening Tips

* Asparagus Grows best in full sun and non-soggy, somewhat sandy soil. I like it cut into one-inch pieces and stir fried raw with sesame oil and a little sliced ginger (top with toasted sesame seeds). Or, brush with olive oil and crushed garlic and grill whole spears on the bar-b. (More asparagus recipes.)

* Bamboo Shoots We have a good-sized stand of bamboo that was on the property when we moved here, so I guess bamboo will be my contribution to the lineage of Yeager Roots. Not all varieties of bamboo shoots are edible (or tasty), so do your homework first. We boil ours to remove the bitterness, then sauté them in butter and a little sherry or sweet vermouth for flavor. Also, be advised that many varieties of bamboo are highly invasive and can be toxic if eaten in large amounts.

* Bunching Onions This is a variety of onion that grows in clumps and multiplies on its own, and they are hardy in the ground even in fairly cold climates. The bulbs themselves are fairly small and pinkish in color (at least the ones I grow). I like to pickle them as something a little unusual for the relish tray... or in the martini glass.

* Garlic As the saying goes, "If your lover doesn't like garlic, get a new lover." Garlic is a healthful perennial, although it's often grown and harvested as an annual. Here's how to keep it coming back every year. I like to rub a whole head of unpeeled garlic with olive oil, wrap it in aluminum foil, and stick it in the oven or on the grill for an hour or so when I'm cooking something else; squirt the warm, creamy pulp of each clove onto a cracker or piece of bread for a heavenly appetizer. (See how to plant, grow, harvest and store your own garlic.)

* Horseradish As long as you harvest just the side roots, horseradish taproots will continue to produce a new harvest every year. To use as a condiment, clean and peel roots; cut into small chunks, and grind in a blender or food processor with a little water to the desired consistency. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt for each cup of blended horseradish, and 2 or 3 tablespoons of white vinegar; seal and store in the refrigerator.

* Kale and Collard Greens Perennial varieties will grow in many climates, and are among the healthiest of all vegetables. I eat greens at least once a week, and find that the secret is to not overcook them. Chop greens into half-inch strips and plunge into a pot of boiling, salted water for 10-15 minutes; remove and dress with butter/olive oil, vinegar/lemon juice and salt or feta cheese. And you thought you didn't like greens. (Kale is a superfood. See what other foods are top sources of Vitamin K.)

* Radicchio Think you can't grow any perennial vegetables in your garden? Don't be radicchio! Seriously, radicchio (aka "Italian chicory") will come back every year in most climates if you don't dig it up for blanching, as some chefs do. I like to add young, raw leaves to spice up a tossed salad, or grill older bunches (brushed with olive oil) to remove some of the bitterness.

* Rhubarb Prefers colder climates, well-drained soil, and part-shade. Strawberry-rhubarb pie is hard to beat, but I also like to make rhubarb sauce instead of apple sauce: Cook two cups of inch-long pieces of cut up rhubarb stems in one-half cup of water until totally broken down, then add sugar and cinnamon to taste.

Read more: http://www.thedailygreen.com/living-green/blogs/save-money/perennial-vegetables-460410#ixzz1kn2J4qN8

John Ikerd on Ethics, Responsibility and Purpose - YouTube

Uploaded by prairiedf

John Ikerd, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Agricultural & Applied Economics at the University of Missouri in Columbia, is a national expert on sustainable agriculture.

We have much admiration for John Ikerd views on sustainability!... Monte & Eileen

Can We Learn From Our Past Treatment of Mother Nature? - The River (1937) and The Plow That Broke the Plains (1937)

The River (1937) Full Movie
Uploaded by travelfilmarchive

The River is a 1938 short documentary film which shows the importance of the Mississippi River to the United States, and how farming and timber practices had caused topsoil to be swept down the river and into the Gulf of Mexico, leading to catastrophic floods and impoverishing farmers. It ends by briefly describing how the Tennessee Valley Authority project was beginning to reverse these problems.

It was written and directed by Pare Lorentz and, like Lorentz's earlier documentary The Plow That Broke the Plains, was also selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant", going into the registry in 1990. The film won the "best documentary" category at the 1938 Venice International Film Festival.

Both films have notable scores by Virgil Thomson that are still heard as concert suites. The film was narrated by the American baritone Thomas Hardie Chalmers.

The two films were sponsored by the U.S. government and specifically the Resettlement Administration (RA) to raise awareness about the New Deal. The RA was folded into the Farm Security Administration in 1937, so The River was officially an FSA production.

There is also a companion book, The River [1] The text was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in poetry in that year.

"The River" - Wikipedia
Wikipedia.- Pare_Lorentz


The Plow That Broke the Plains (1937)
Uploaded by PublicResourceOrg

Lorentz worked on the film with composer Virgil Thomson, who shared Lorentz's enthusiasm for folk music and incorporated many folk melodies, along with other popular and religious music, into the soundtrack. The film was narrated by the American baritone Thomas Hardie Chalmers.The Plow That Broke the Plains (1936) is a short documentary film which shows what happened to the Great Plains region of the United States and Canada when uncontrolled agricultural farming led to the Dust Bowl. It was written and directed by Pare Lorentz.

The film was sponsored by the United States government (Resettlement Administration) to raise awareness about the New Deal and was intended to cost $6,000 or less; it eventually cost over $19,000 and Lorentz, turning in many receipts written on various scraps of paper, had many of his reimbursements denied and paid for much of the film himself. Lorentz later faced criticism for appearing to blame westward bound settlers for the ecological crisis by having eroded the soil of the Plains with unrestrained farming (and one of his photographers, Arthur Rothstein, was criticized for moving a skull from one location to another in the Dust Bowl to shoot it and for other stagings in the film), but the film nonetheless succeeded in driving home the message of the severity of the problem caused by the misuse of land.

Virgil Thomson compiled a concert suite from his original score, which has been performed and recorded. One of the earliest recordings was for Vanguard Records with Leopold Stokowski conducting the Symphony of the Air; the original stereo LP also included a suite from Thomson's score for another Lorentz documentary, The River.

In 1999, The Plow That Broke the Plains was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

For John Deere's "Plow That Broke the Plains", see John Deere (inventor)#Steel plow.

Wikipedia- The Plow That Broke the Plains


If a picture is worth a 1000 words, a movie must be worth 1,000,000 words... two movies --> 2,000,000 words...

Today,  many  Food Production practices are still treating "Mother Nature" with disrespect, almost like she is our "Bitch"!...

Some of those with "controlling interests" in Food Production lack "Integrity"...

Can the grassroots change this?




With respect regards and respect,
Monte & Eileen Hines
Hines Farm Blog

A video history of America's mighty forests, timber harvesting, mills, and methods used to reclaim and build reproduction furniture - from Lee Tigner

Reclaiming Our History Part 1 - Our History Is A Treasure To Be Preserved from Lee Tigner on Vimeo. Reclaiming Our History Part 1 - Our History Is A Treasure To Be Preserved. See our process from reclamation to finished material through explanations of woodworking techniques, descriptions of antique lumber and historical relevance. Part 1 of 6.

Part 2 - Lee Tigner blends historic images of harvesting timber with a demonstration of how he mills timber into boards using his 100-year-old bandsaw mill

Part 3 - Lee Tigner melds photos of historic timber harvesting and pitch gathering with an explanation of the drying process for reclaimed lumber

Part 4 - Lee Tigner combines vintage images of timber harvesting with a demonstration of how he planes, joins and dresses the reclaimed timber that he uses to build reproduction furniture

Part 5 - North Georgia woodworker Lee Tigner salvages 19th-century old-growth timber from wherever it can be found, then builds furniture with it in his workshop, Early American Furnishings.of his video series, Lee combines vintage images of timber harvesting with a description of how he achieves the ideal finish for the reproduction furniture he builds from reclaimed timber.- Uploaded by HighlandWoodworking on Jan 21, 2012

Reclaiming Our History Part 6 - Our Connection to the Past from Lee Tigner on Vimeo. Process from reclamation to finished material through explanations of woodworking techniques, descriptions of antique lumber and historical relevance. Part 6 of 6.

Sinker Cypress Hope Chest from Lee Tigner on Vimeo. From reclamation to a finished piece, we document the construction of a hope chest made from sinker reclaimed cypress.

Carolina Gold - Old growth cypress logs are reclaimed from South Carolina rivers by Alec Blalock of Virgin Heart Sinker Cypress, LLC and processed into fine furniture by Lee Tigner of Early American Furnishings. Explore our process of reclamation and the history of this amazing resource.

Pieces of History from Lee Tigner on Vimeo. Early American Furnishings craftsman Lee Tigner specializes in turning reclaimed timber into beautiful home furnishings. Heirloom quality Longleaf Heart Pine, Sinker Cypress and American Chestnut furniture is made from historically significant wood fiber. Explore this important resource, our hand-made production methods, and authentic documentation process.

Spirit of Moses - The history of the Kemp Family, early settlers of CobbCounty, Georgia in 1845. Compiled from the family's genealogical record, Cobb County Archives, Vanishing Georgia, and the Library of Congress.Written by Lee Tigner, founder of Early American Furnishings, Craftsman of Fine, Reclaimed Heart Pine Furnishings.

They Came For Treasure from Lee Tigner on Vimeo. From Colonial discovery through the modern era, the History of America's forests is woven into the fabric of American culture. Sit back and enjoy this delightful video mini-history (with a beautiful musical soundtrack). Written by Lee Tigner, Founder of Early American Furnishings, Craftsman of Fine, Reclaimed Heart Pine Furnishings.

Related Links:
Early American Furnishings.com <-- Great Site!!!
Lee Tigner's Early American Furnishings on Vemeo
Highland Woodworking
Highland Woodworking YouTube Videos
Great job!!! 
Lee Tigner for these great videos... 
Wonderful music also... 
Monte Hines

Mother Nature Gets Her Day in Court : Discovery News

Communities in the United States have laws granting rights to nature. In Ecuador, a judge upheld the constitutional rights of nature to stop a destructive road building project.

Farmland in Vilcabamba, Ecuador.
Bob Winsett, Corbis

Ecuador and Bolivia granted legal rights to the environment within the past few years. But what are those rights and can they really be enforced?  "The rights of nature laws recognize the rights of ecosystems and natural communities to exist, to flourish, to regenerate, and to evolve," Mari Margill, associate director of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF), told Discovery News. CELDF helped Ecuador write the rights of nature into legal reality.

"The rights of nature laws move nature from being considered 'property' under the law to being recognized as 'rights bearing' under the law," said Margill.

But laws are nothing but ink on paper if not enforced. A court case in Ecuador showed that these Earth friendly laws have claws and aren't just idealistic public relations legislation.

Invasive Species Recipes: Cookbook Photos

Article 71 of Ecuador's constitution acknowledged the rights of the environment in 2008. The first court caseto test the strength of these rights was held March 30, 2011. Two plaintiffs presented a constitutional injunction to halt a road project which deposited rock, tree trunks and other debris in the Vilcabamba River. The plaintiffs stood in for the damaged ecosystem in court, much like a legal guardian stands in for a child. The local provincial court found in favor of the environment and upheld the injunction.

"Even as these laws are just beginning to be enforced... they are still important because they play a significant educational role in raising awareness about the rights and needs of nature," Linda Sheehan, executive director of the Earth Law Center, told Discovery News.

BLOG: Congress Inadvertently Passed Law Decreasing CO2 Levels

VIDEO: All About Climate Change: From Glacial Melt to Endangered Tigers

Giving Mother Nature her day in court isn't limited to the Southern Hemisphere.

"Several dozen municipalities in the US have adopted rights of nature laws. This includes the City of Pittsburgh, in November 2010. CELDF assisted the city to draft the ordinance which also is the first in the nation to ban corporations from natural gas drilling within a municipality," Margill said.

Sheehan recently worked with Santa Monica, California to develop a "Sustainability Bill of Rights," which acknowledged the rights of nature.

BLOG: Legal Deal to Kill Golden Eagle

The American legal system has been considering the environment's legal standing for at least 40 years. Justice William Douglas' dissenting opinion in the 1972 Supreme court case, Sierra Club v. Morton, paved the way for considering legal rights for the Earth, although the Sierra Club lost the case.

If granting legal rights to something as vague as nature seems strange, consider the legal rights granted to another intangible entity, the corporation, as exemplified by the United States Supreme Court's decision in the Citizens United case.

University of Southern California law professor Christopher Stone drew an analogy between corporate rights and environmental rights in the 2011 re-issue of his book "Should Trees Have Standing." Justice Douglas based his 1972 dissent on the first edition of Stone's book.

"The rights of nature are more like human rights than 'rights' of corporations, which are artificial legal entities holding rights created by courts," Sheehan said.

"Rights of humans and nature arise from the same place- our joint heritage shared through our co-evolution on, and citizenship of, the Earth," continued Sheehan. "But corporate 'rights' unfortunately have trampled on both human and environmental rights, particularly in the wake of Citizens United, which is increasingly co-opting our right to self-governance."

In the face of corporate power, environmental rights advocates push for fundamental changes in legal structures in order to put the long term health of the planet and its human inhabitants ahead of profits.

"Existing environmental laws (Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, etc.) treat nature as property, such that the owner of that property effectively has the right to destroy the nature that exists on his property," said Margil. "Similarly, slaves were treated as property under the law and a slave 'owner' had the right to destroy his 'property.'"

"Our existing structures of environmental law will not allow us to achieve anything close to true sustainability... in its place, we need to drive a fundamentally new legal structure forward," concluded Margil.
The law is considered to be the first instance of environmental law that gives legal personhood to the natural system, and may also allow for citizens to sue individuals and groups as part of "Mother Earth" in response to real and alleged infringements of its integrity.

We need something to stop people from treating "Nature" as a "bitch". Everything we do should consider "Nature" as our partner. That partner will reward us kindly, if we treat it with respect.

What will it take to get "everyone's attention"?!

What will it take to get everyone to act with "integrity" when dealing with "Nature"?!

If not now... When? ... When it is too late for human species on spaceship earth?!

What are the answers that achieve the goal that has "Nature" treated with "integrity and respect"?


With respect and regards,
Monte & Eileen Hines
Hines Farm Blog

Jan 27, 2012

Gardening in the Zone: Starting Seeds Indoors - YouTube

Richard Jauron discusses how to start your garden seeds indoors to get a jump start on your garden.

How To Projects - Free from Skil

9 high-profile champions of nuclear power: Who's on board? | MNN - Mother Nature Network

Full Article
nuclear cooling towers
Who's on board?
My take away: It surprised me who is on board! I was convinced by Amory Lovins (http://www.rmi.org/pid257) that Nuclear Power is not really feasible on economic grounds alone. Private money is not willing to finance, so why should taxpayers... What's your thoughts?   Monte Hines
Ever since an earthquake and tsunami triggered a nuclear disaster in Japan last spring, some people might assume that public figures who previously had supported the technology might have had a change of heart.

While a few pro-nuke leaders have turned against the technology (most notably German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who canceled all new German nuclear plants), a few high-profile, influential and powerful leaders still think fission is a way to wean us off oil, stop global warming, and lead us to greater energy self-sufficiency.

Why don’t these people support other forms of energy (such as solar, wind and geothermal), all of which have much lower costs and don’t cause disasters? Many of them do, but they see nuclear as part of the mix, while others may have other reasons, like economics, for supporting the building of new plants. (Text: Starre Vartan)