Saturday, September 10, 2011

Silly Sustainability Saturday for 9-10-11

Time for another tour through the lighter side of sustainability this week, with sustainability news that is funny, silly (including just plain stupid), fun, or simply positive. This week's news features Next Media Animation, the Rachel Maddow Show, Think Progress Green, and Girst; it begins over the jump.

Next Media Animation managed to post several sustainability related videos this week that all touched on topics I've blogged about before. The most recent gives the channel's trademake snarky take to Obama's jobs bill proposal.

President Obama spoke before a joint session of Congress on Thursday, although not every member wanted to attend.

He said it was time to go big with a jobs bill that will include many tax cuts, infrastructure building and more stimulus projects.

The president didn't mention the cost of the bill, but he did say that it would be revenue neutral.

Obama said America's jobless need relief now and urged GOP members to vote the bill through without holdups.

As a president, Obama is dogged by many problems. Can a reappearance by candidate Obama turn things around?
While I haven't blogged about this jobs proposal in particular, I have described how President Obama loves sustainable development packaged as making America competitive several times. This fits right in with that theme.

Earlier this week, I blogged about Rick Perry. Also, I've satirized Perry praying for rain in an early Silly Sustainability Saturday, Silly Sustainability Saturday: Boobs and Haboobs, so his propensity for faith-based solutions is not a new subject for this series. It's fitting that Next Media Animation decided to make him the first subject of their series on the GOP Presidential candidates.

Rick Perry was born a democrat to rancher parents deep in the heart of Texas. He met his wife in kindergarten at a piano recital.

Perry was a backer of former vice president Al Gore. But GOP operative Karl Rove convinced Perry to switch sides.

Perry became the governor of Texas when George W. Bush and Karl Rove left for the White House.

He is known for creating jobs. But critics say his business grants reward political donors.

His HPV program was attacked because it benefited a donor.

Also unpopular is a $5 "pole tax" that bar patrons must pay to enjoy live nude entertainment.

Perry is not a Bush clone. In fact, Perry and Bush hate each other. Bush and Rove backed Perry's GOP rival in the 2010 governor's race.

Perry is known for praying. He prayed for drought relief. But God has a sense of humor and denied Perry his rain.

Still, Perry leads the GOP race. Will he go all the way?
Grist embedded the Mandarin language version of this video in Cartoon version of Rick Perry indistinguishable from the real thing. Yes, folks, Perry is a cartoon.

By the way, if you want to see their take on Mitt Romney, it's here. There will be more coming. Michele Bachmann, anyone?

I've mentioned backyard chickens multiple times before, beginning with Raising chickens in Metro Detroitlast April and continuing with Raising chickens is totally rock and roll, which I mentioned in Silly Sustainability Saturday for Labor Day weekend 2011. It's now Next Media Animation's turn.

Backyard chickens have taken off as an unlikely trend in the US. However, in many localities, keeping backyard chickens is illegal. Neighbors could cry fowl and get the birds removed. Between housing, feeding and taking care of the birds, backyard chickens can end up costing more than supermarket eggs.Even in cities where urban chickens are allowed, there is a limit on numbers. And noisy roosters are a definite no no. What will backyard farmers get up to next?
Finally, here is the video I used for Did Hurricane Irene live up to the hype? The numbers say yes, which I reposted on Daily Kos as Did Hurricane Irene live up to the hype? Nate Silver's numbers say yes. Hey, I'm an environmentalist. I recycle.

The Weather Channel doesn't get many viewers when the weather is nice. Instead, the network banks on its major storm coverage. Hurricane Irene gave The Weather Channel its best full-day ratings ever.

New tropical systems are now threatening the US Gulf, including Hurricane Katia, much to The Weather Channel's delight.

Weather Channel reporters are known for turning up the drama, even when conditions are less than dangerous.

But if forecasters over-hype every storm, will Americans take warnings seriously when a real disaster strikes?
Hurricane Irene was a real disaster.

Under the subject of a serious issue affecting people's entertainment, Think Progress Green reported that Heavy Rain And Lightning Stop College Football Games In Season’s Opening Weekend. Earlier this week, I described how Thunderstorms disrupt Michigan season opener, Arts, Beats, and Eats, and other events. Today, the local headline about this topic read "Will you get wet at the Michigan-Notre Dame game Saturday?" Ah, America, continue to be clear about your screwed up priorities.

In addition to their comment on the Next Media Animation video about Rick Perry that I posted above, Grist had some light-hearted takes on other environmental issues. First, they point out that looking at nature makes you smarter. Maybe that's why we can see what's so stupid about Representative Joe Wilson's tweet in Representative thinks Obama controls the weather and he can't. Next, in the picture is worth 1000 words category, Grist shows how much driving to work sucks with the infographic accompanying Gaze upon the eight circles of commuting hell. It makes me even more glad to be able to walk to work.

Finally, here's something positive from the Maddow Blog, which has a cute photo of someone going the extra mile for sustainability in Re-cycling!
This man in Philadelphia was picking up recycling bins by bicycle. I've seen the Pedal People take out trash and haul boxes by bike in Northampton, Massachusetts, but nothing in Philly.

Reducing oil consumption, pollution (and calories!), why hasn't this spread everywhere? Or has it? Have you folks ever seen bikes take the place of trucks?
Click on the link to see the photo.

And that's it for the lighter side of sustainability this week.

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