Editor's Musings

Bayer, a German maker of pharmaceuticals and crop chemicals recently bought Monsanto for $63 billion. They are facing massive challenges from a wave of lawsuits over an alleged carcinogenic effect of its Roundup weed killer.  Now, Bayer has seen about 30 billion euros ($34 billion) wiped off its market value since August, when a U.S. jury found Bayer liable because Monsanto had not warned of weed killer Roundup’s alleged cancer risks. More than 10,000 cases are still pending.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the European Chemicals Agency and other regulators across the globe have found that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, is not likely carcinogenic to humans.

However, the World Health Organization’s cancer arm in 2015 reached a different conclusion, classifying glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans”.

Bayer is legally challenging the verdicts and has stressed that regulators across the globe have found the product to be safe.

 

On page 18 of this paper, there is an article from Kate Harries of AWARE Simcoe re the charges against former Mayor Bill French. So far, this has cost the taxpayers at least $310,000 with more, maybe much more to come.

The idea has been floated that since the Township is paying the bill that they bring this action to an end as our finances can and should be used for a better purpose.

Bill French did not spend over his limit. Two audits that cost almost $77,000 proved that. The audits did say he spent more than declared but the Municipal Act allows for a situation in which the candidate, acting in good faith, inadvertently committed an error.

At council in a question / answer back and forth it was explained why they are helpless.

I do not think they are helpless until I see a report from some independent lawyer which says their hands are tied. If their hands are tied and they can do nothing, these lawyers could continue and potentially bankrupt the municipality (very unlikely) could they not? Suppose they lose if and when this goes to court. Since Springwater has no say but pays the bills, who is to stop the lawyers from appealing the case all the way to the supreme court.

 

There is a program for almost everything imaginable. On the World Population website which tells you there are more than 7.7 billion people on earth now, I put the date of my birth in and found that I was the 2,468,388,691st person alive on earth. (https://worldpopulationhistory.org/my-population-number/) If you were born this week, you would be approximately the 7,660,877, 600+ person alive on earth.   Give it a try!

 

I often thought I should get a subscription to the Ontario Farmer, a business paper that comes out once a week,  consisting sometimes of three parts and may have approximately 68 pages of agricultural information. It’s on shiny paper and well put together. Since I don’t get enough time to read the letters, papers/magazines, books, emails, etc., that I do receive...the days are not long enough...or I read too slowly, maybe I do not need it.

 

I did take a speed reading course. It was a package offered through the Reader’s Digest years back. I still have it and pick it up once in a while to play and practice with it. There are sheets you put into a devise, set up the sequence and then click a button as the window opens and closes for a fraction of a second.  You can go back and check to see if you got the word or number right. As you progress, you go from 2 or 3 numbers to 8 or more. For words, it goes from one to sentences. There are three speeds - all too fast -  that you can practice with. If there were 50 sheets, I doubt I got pass 10. I played with my grandchildren and were I saw a black spot momentarily, they told me what the word or number was.

Then there were reading lessons which taught you how to read thoroughly and faster. After a minute, you had to answer the questions to check your reading accuracy. In a short time, my speed reading went from 325 words per minute to almost 550 with an accuracy of more than 90%.

If we are going for a walk, we like to leisurely enjoy our outing, not see how fast you can get from point A to where ever and back to point A. I think I like to read for fun rather than speed.

 

So back to the Ontario Farmer, four copies of which Mary Stone delivered to my door, thank you!

There were some articles in the March 19 issue about animal right activists coming unto your land and into your barns and taking pictures of your animals. We know they want the one picture of the sick calf, or injured pig so they can knock the way farmers raise and look after their animals despite the fact that might be a fraction of a percent of the animals you have.

At one farm, despite the farmer’s pleas, the activists claimed they had a right to enter the farm because of a supposed invitation from the industry.

To be clear, no one including industry representatives can invite someone onto your property against your wishes.

It goes on to say that a Citizen’s arrest is legal in Canada and the farmer, employees and friends could have legally detained all or some of the protestors while they trespassed on the land. Unfortunately, the article does not suggest which way to do it.

 

I could imagine having some young farmer friends who may want to throw a punch or two.

I could imagine holding the person and using some binder twine or duct tape to restrain them.

I could even imagine more rude and threatening methods but at what point are these actions illegal.

How much are the activists going to fight back?

I would suggest recording everything that ensues.

Although I have my opinions about guns that does not include brandishing arms, I do think that if this was the US of A there may have been a shot or two fired.

When I read about some intrusions into our homes were the criminal sues because he tripped over a toy, hurt himself, one wonders who has the most power.

 

So while this was all going on, you might wonder if the police were called. The article said it was hours before they arrived which makes one wonder...

You may have heard the joke - the homeowner calls the police and says there is someone prowling around his yard.

The police say they are busy and won’t be there for a while.

The home owner sits there thinking about it and then calls back to the police. He tells them not to worry, he just shot the intruder.

Within seconds/minutes, numerous police cars are coming from all directions, sirens blaring and lights flashing and apprehend the intruder.

The police question the home owner saying that they thought he had said he had shot the intruder.

The home owner replies. “I thought you said you could not be here for quite a while?

 

A small point but there are cases of these animal rights individuals getting a job on farms only for the purpose of finding faults with the operations.

As a former farmer, we treated our animals with all due respect. If we did not, they produced less milk, less meat, fewer eggs. This was our income.

And as a former farmer, and business owner, I read suggestions from ‘experts’ that are increasing taxes or expenses, suggesting we have to become more efficient. To stay in business, we are always looking for ways to be more efficient because that means more dollars and that might be the difference between paying the bills or claiming bankruptcy.

What really offends is that this comes from a salaried individual who makes the same every week whether he tries hard or slacks off.

 

Politics - predictions - this paper will go to press before we see that Jason Kenney has won Alberta in their 30th General Election this past Tuesday April 16th.

 

And to end, Mick Jagger has had his operation. He called it a ‘Walk in the Park!’ and he is recovering nicely.

So maybe the Rolling Stones trip to Burl’s Creek is not cancelled as I prematurely suggested in the last paper.

 

So Charles, you have a ticket don’t you?