“Cornithaca County” is a fictitious name for a real future. The first part of this book will contain stories, games, jokes, and activities that dissect the actions and intent of elitist policy making in the county. The second part will document actual incidents and issues that raise questions about the conduct of those who have been entrusted with the welfare of the public at large. At the end of the book, I will present a powerful circumstantial case — and a chilling denouement.
My bio should to start here:
“Early Sunday morning, June 4, 2017, I was sicker than I had ever been before. Too sick to even bend over, as I vomited all over the toilet, myself, and the bathroom floor — and I didn’t even care.”
This was the aftermath of being engulfed in a cloud of Roundup from a giant agricultural sprayer while I was mowing my lawn the previous afternoon.
The incident motivated me to write “You Know You Live near a Factory Farm When Your Kids Go Fishing with a Pool Skimmer” — a picture book with large print and cautionary captions. “Family Farm Fun” is the second book in the Factory Farm series.
At this same time I grew increasingly aware of the treatment that the rural community in the town was receiving, and began my blog on elitist policy making: Rural Tompkins County — The Road to Hell is Paved with Good Credentials.
As for right now, what should I do next?
I think I’ll go to my favorite pub. Maybe there’s someone there who hasn’t heard my story.
My brother says, “Good luck with that!”
People argue that ideas for significantly reducing bureaucracy are simplistic; but won’t admit that their own arguments are equally simplistic. • Narrow-view arguments “externalize” costs and benefits that are important factors in making a balanced decision. Industrial Agriculture likes to point to the cheap price of food in the stores, but that [not even counting environmental and human costs] is only a fraction of what the public is paying for that food — there are investment tax credits, school tax credits, electricity cost reduction, gas tax elimination, school tax credits that can return 100% of their tax from state tax revenues, and a host of subsidies, giveaways, and incentives, that are hidden from casual view. A “Flat Tax” could free up a significant portion of the 75,000 IRS workers [and who knows how many tax preparers, lawyers, etc.] for other careers that would be of much more value to society; this is an “opportunity cost” that Flat Tax opponents don’t like to deal with. Or how about the benefits from not forcing the public to navigate the tax form bureaucracy? There would certainly be an upswing in productivity. • Any societal debate that doesn’t include all the costs and benefits, and doesn’t put the welfare of people as the most important factor, is closing the door to our future.