Will Parrish: Support Hard-Hitting Independent Journalism…



Journalists who challenge power structures and investigate deeply into the causes of social ills scarcely get funded in the contemporary media marketplace. Please support me in bringing these stories of optimism and determination in the face of destruction to broader audiences…

No other place of equivalent size in the world has altered its watersheds as dramatically as California.  The Golden State is home to a staggering infrastructure of dams, reservoirs, power plants, pumping plants, canals, aqueducts, gates, tunnels, and other installations that are all about controlling where water goes and who receives it.

The year 2013 was California’s driest on record. The first six months of 2014 have been the hottest half-year on record. Reservoirs are drying up. Groundwater basins are diminishing at an alarming pace. Yet, the water demands of the state’s gargantuan agribusiness empire, its sprawling metropolises, and its extractive industries (such as, increasingly, fracking) are only growing.

Politicians and business leaders are seizing on this crisis by pushing for the largest dam- and canal-building binge since the State Water Project of the 1960s and ’70s. The best known of these, the Delta Twin Tunnels, is just the tip of the spear for all manner of new schemes that would further constipate California’s waterways and destroy much of what remains of its aquatic life…

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One Comment

Mr. Parrish, you are an deep inspiration by your words, your deeds and your activism.
A Heartfelt Thank You!
The “Greatest Water Crisis in the History of California” has been known since early February of this year by our “leaders”.

Since our govern (to rule) ment (mental) refuses to order mandatory water cuts to conserve precious water reserves we will run out of water as soon as Winter comes. Meanwhile, they are allowing what little water we have left to continue to water lawns, golf courses, restaurants, etc. with only voluntary cuts asked for in most counties.
Food prices rose 1.7% in May, the greatest increase in food prices ever recorded in that month.

The USDA finally released their report on the “diseased and unsound” record recall of 9 million pounds of beef from Rancho Petaluma slaughterhouse. Their finding raised many more questions than it gave answers.

“Until Monday, USDA officials had publicly said little more than Rancho had circumvented inspection rules and processed “diseased and unsound animals.” Such a lack of details had set off considerable speculation that was not quieted by Monday’s revelations.

‘What we don’t know is probably more than what we know,’ Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, said Monday. Rep. Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael, said he was “surprised at how narrow” the indictment is, maintaining it does not support the recall ordered by the USDA.

“If there’s not much more than this to explain the breadth of this recall, then I think USDA has some serious explaining to do,” Huffman said.
He said “conspicuously absent” from the indictment was any mention of a USDA veterinarian who Huffman said was “either so negligent or complicit” in the alleged criminal activity at the Petaluma facility that the person quit after the recall was announced.

He said the document also doesn’t mention a USDA inspector who allegedly was involved in an intimate relationship with an employee of the slaughterhouse. Huffman on Monday reiterated his call for the USDA to speed up its review of the problems at the slaughterhouse. Thompson and Huffman are seeking an additional $1 million for the agency’s inspector general to assist in the investigation. The amendment passed the House of Representatives.

Huffman said he tried contacting an undersecretary at the Department of Agriculture Monday seeking information about the agency’s investigation but he hadn’t heard back. He said similar calls in the past have been ignored.

‘I’m not going to let this go. We’re just not going to let this be forgotten,’ he said. A USDA spokesperson referred questions Monday to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.”

Friends and family of mine this past week from Southern California, came to our ranch for a wedding. To almost a person they reported that many ranches and farms on their drive up were ” dead and dying” due to the Fed’s zero water allocation policy this year, breaking a 54 year-old contract with our states Central Valley farmers.