September 17, 2009
Sean Hannity broadcasted live from Huron, CA this evening, raising the nation’s awareness of the tragedy unfolding in the parched fields of our fertile valley. Ground water is not sufficient for farming operations during our drought cycle. That is why there are annual surface water supplements allocated. However, tunnel-visioned environmentalists have successfully lobbied to have those allocations stopped in order to protect the Delta smelt and Chinook salmon. Each winter the pumps are turned off at the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta in accordance with Endangered Species Act (ESA) provisions. Despite a three-year drought, Congress decided that the pumps should not be turned on this spring. As a result, there are miles and miles of fallow fields from Bakersfield to Sacramento.
While unemployment in some communities is at 40 percent locally, hundreds of millions of people have not felt the full effect of this fiasco yet. Grocery prices are quickly rising across the nation, however, and fresh produce from foreign countries will be needed to supplement dwindling domestic production. With every shipment of foreign produce also comes the potential for introduction of pests for which we do not have natural predators. Therefore, California, and the rest of the nation, as well, may be facing more than just water issues down the road.
Much of the farmland on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley looks like this, instead of planted fields.
Local congressmen George Radanovich, Devin Nunes, and Jim Costa each spoke briefly about why we do not currently have the usual annual surface water supplement allocations. Comedian and water allocation advocate, Paul Rodriguez, also spoke passionately about the plight of farmers and farmworkers. Alan Autry, a popular actor and former Mayor of Fresno, probably summed up the dire situation best when he called federal prohibition of water shipments to the Valley “an act of domestic terrorism.” The commericial in which he states, “If you like foreign oil, you’ll love foreign food,” was aired several times during the program.
The recurring theme throughout the broadcast was that the federal government has contributed to the drought and farm failures in the San Joaquin Valley, and powerful Democrats such as Nancy Pelosi, are at the forefront of the problem.
I must question whether environmentalists have considered whether they are pushing humans toward the benchmark for endangered species. Without water and food, we surely cannot survive.