We reprise last week’s posts, include a link to the Retake Conversation with Rep. Melanie Stansbury and a second video at the end of the post, on maintaining your mental health during COVID. Lastly, we offer more thoughts on the 2020 election.
A Retake Conversation on Water with Rep. Melanie Stansbury
Retake Conversation with Rep. Melanie Stansbury. We focused most of the conversation on water policy, water quality and water management (or lack thereof). Stansbury is a water expert and is planning a series of legislative initiatives to address the current state of affairs: a state beset by drought while not having the ability to even manage its use of water. Not a good combo. Listen in and find out about Rep Stansbury’s plan.
Last week, I devoted two of the three posts on the ways in which COVID is impacting pretty much everyone in the US, from those who enjoy significant buffers to those who are utterly vulnerable. One reader commented that together the posts were a bit deflating and that we need more inspiration. I see the point, but I also heard from many folks that they appreciated the posts as they validated the emotions shared by many of you. But while part of my intent in writing the two pieces was to validate how much COVID is impacting all of us, the real purpose was to serve as a backdrop for this week when we will unveil an urgent call to action for every last one of you to become engaged in the national election. Trust that we have been planning this for some time and will have a step-by-step guide for significantly impacting the general election and key Senate races.
To be blunt: if we don’t oust Trump and Retake the Senate in November, we will have lost far more than an election. We will have lost time that can never be retrieved. Have you noticed how little is being written about the climate crisis of late? With COVID dominating the news, it is essential we regain power, first so we can finally contain COVID and then having secured power in Congress and the White House, turn our attention to a just transition, the Green New Deal and a host of racial, gender and social justice needs..
Stay tuned because we are going to exhort you very, very strongly to get involved in this election and will provide you with all the tools you need to do so.
A Look Back at an Emotional Week
The Tuesday-Thursday posts worked as companion pieces, exploring the impact COVID is having on those with privilege and then the far more devastating impact upon those 20 and 30 year olds whose careers, relationships and families would normally be developing at their age, but with COVID most all of that is on hold or worse. Saturday, we shifted gears and examined Trump’s efforts to use executive orders to gut Social Security and his methodical effort to dismantle the US Postal Service. Saturday never achieves as many readers and so many may have missed this post. Another reason to examine the Saturday post is that it includes a short video with tips on maintaining your mental health during COVID.
Yesterday, I Had a Meltdown
Tuesday, August 4. It started with a song by Stephen Kellogg with lyrics describing how he had no answers for his daughter’s questioning eyes, causing me to think about our kids, how their lives were being disrupted by the virus and how I reallly had no words for them either. It cascaded when I read an article from the Washington Post focused on three young DC residents who were being economically destroyed by the virus and the inability of an overwhelmed support net system to help them. The post resonated with many and closed on an upbeat note, offering ways we can address our sense of loss and lack of control over our lives. Click here to read this post.
Post Meltdown Conversations
Thursday, August 6. Tuesday’s post resulted in several folks we know reaching out. The conversations caused me to realize both that many of you are having similar moments and that talking about it helps. So, in this post, we talked. We also examined a Heather Cox Richardson piece that was extraordinarily well-researched and laid out a series of Trump actions that leave him legally vulnerable the day he leaves office. Click here to read the full post.
Trump Using COVID-19 Relief As a Way to Undermine Social Security and the Postal Service: AARP NOT Amused
Saturday, Aug. 8. We reported on how Retake is now ramping up our election campaign work. We also covered Trump’s shameless effort to undermine the post office & eliminate payroll taxes due to COVID, a clear effort to withhold a key SSI revenue source. Plus, we provided background info, speaking points and contact info on an URGENT Action Alert on LANL and you still have time to act. We also included a video from Robert Reich outlining how Trump and the GOP have prioritized benefiting the privileged while ignoring the desperate needs of those being impacted by COVID. Click here to review the full post.
Tips for Sustaining Your Mental Health &
Wellness During COVID
A short, video that offers a handful of tips for sustaining hope, balance & wellness during these challenging times.
Paul & Roxanne
*Finally*, I’m listening to the interview with State Rep. Stansbury. Interesting. About working with Tribes – at a recent online meeting of the Pojoaque Valley Irrigation District, two representatives of the Pueblo of Pojoaque were present. There seemed to be respect all around.
About modernizing water infrastructure – there are hugely positive aspects to that. Let’s be careful, though, to keep what works already. For example, Corps of Engineers type thinking says that unlined earthen ditches in the traditional acequia water system are hugely wasteful because water seeps into the ground. But at least one study report has outlined benefits of that – basically, a widened riparian corridor that helps support wildlife and actually recharges the local water tables where the unlined ditches flow. From up on the Pajarito Plateau, you can see that the Pojoaque Valley green belt around the stream is probably wider than might be expected.
My main concern with water is this: we must return to the philosophy and practice of water management (and some land management, and air) as a commons belonging to all people. Privatization of water supplies is to me utterly wrong. Neither should water be managed by public entities in any way that reduces any community’s access to clean water. We need to see that we all are together when it comes to water.
I enjoyed the interview with Representative Stansbury and of course there is only so much that can be covered in an hour. But, IMO, there are questions that should be addressed soon, if not yesterday.
I wiil just look at Aamodt. What is the impact on the aquifer of a water system with no waste water treatment system? There are several reasons to think the result will be significant pollution ot the aquifer. The question was simply ignored in the EIS.
Other important questions were introduced by changes instituted after the EIS and thus could not have been studied in the EIS. E.g., the completed water system will rely upon the existing distribution systems of the Pueblos. This is a substantial change in the chemistry of the water passing through these distribution systems. Think Flint Michigan and the children whose physical and mental development has been permanently stunted.. This change should be carefully reviewed. Also, the pipes will be buried one foot closer to the surface. What are the implications in terms of increased scouring particularly when climate change may bring increased severity of flooding? Also, 1,000 acre feet of water will be piped up Bishops Lodge Road into the city and used for development. Supposedly the use is temporary. But once the development occurs, how does the need for the water ever cease.?
Climate change. What if the required water is not in the Rio Grande and the new water system must be fed from wells. $400 million spent to achieve nothing?
I certainly have not taken in-depth looks at any of these. I don’t the time, expertise, or resources. But someone should.
Please be sure to tune in for our Zoominar on water with Stansbury, Norm Gaume and possibly Paula Garcia.
I look forward to that webinar!
Youtube closed the connections to the videos. Maybe you need to include wrtten attachment.
Thanks for your great work Paul! -Nelson