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Monday, July 20, 2009

For all the chicken littles scared of a few hens

Jackknifed TruckImage by Rev. Voodoo via Flickr

For anyone who thinks that food is something that just magically appears in the stores, consider this story below (h/t Sharon Astyk's Casaubon's Book blog).

Now recall the warning that any country is just three missed meals away from revolution, and then consider how precarious our food situation is in the US, with the average forkful having traveled 1500 miles to you, all propelled by fossil fuels and with no reserve capacity or local stores of food squirreled away.

Now consider how frighteningly awful it would be if a lot of homes in Salem had some hens in the yard, turning food scraps and weeds into a few eggs every week.

Paulson reveals US concerns of breakdown in law and order

The Bush administration and Congress discussed the possibility of a breakdown in law and order and the logistics of feeding US citizens if commerce and banking collapsed as a result of last autumn's financial panic, it was disclosed yesterday.

Making his first appearance on Capitol Hill since leaving office, the former Treasury secretary Hank Paulson said it was important at the time not to reveal the extent of officials' concerns, for fear it would "terrify the American people and lead to an even bigger problem".

Mr Paulson testified to the House Oversight Committee on the Bush administration's unpopular $700bn (£426bn) bailout of Wall Street, which was triggered by the failure of Lehman Brothers last September. In the days that followed, a run on some of the safest investment vehicles in the financial markets threatened to make it impossible for people to access their savings.

Paul Kanjorski, a Pennsylvania Democrat, asked Mr Paulson to reveal details of officials' concerns, which were relayed to Congress in hasty conference calls last year. The calls included discussion of law and order and whether it would be possible to feed the American people, and for how long, according to Mr Kanjorski. . . .

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