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News & Views of Phillips Since 1976
Sunday May 19th 2024

“Democracy” and Bees

My butternut squash plants have commenced to flower and set their early fruit. Like all curcubits (squash, melons, cucumbers, gourds, pumpkins) they are monecious, meaning the male and female aspects are embodied in one plant. However, the flowers themselves are not hermaphroditic. The male and female blooms are separate.

The males reveal in morning, only to fade before the day is done. By then bees will have gathered the pollen, and the sperm contained within. Nectar laden females flower the following day, blossoms adorning the miniature fruits with their ovaries and eggs. Joyous bees appear positively ecstatic!

But what?

Market forces, the profit motive, and corporate domination are killing off our bees.

I have in hand two letters from Susan Allen, my state representative. She writes:

“Thank you for contacting me to share your support for Governor Dayton”'s proposal for a minimum 50-foot buffer strip along [our] waterways”¦to help increase water quality in our lakes, rivers, and streams as well as create 125,000 acres of new wildlife habitat. This initiative is part of a larger strategy to reduce nutrient pollution from agricultural and industrial sources and ensure that everyone in Minnesota has access to quality water.”

In her second letter Susan writes:

“Given the states projected $1.9 billion surplus”¦The legislature was presented a great opportunity to build upon progress”¦Unfortunately, due to divided government, this positive momentum was stalled. Instead, the House of Representatives”' majority favored tax cuts for big corporations.”

“Perhaps the legislature”'s biggest failure this year was in the area of environmental protection. The Omnibus Environmental/Agricultural bill that was enacted”¦put corporate interests ahead of protecting our state”'s natural resources”¦To effectively address these challenges we recognize that protecting corporate interests at the expense of individuals is simply not fair”¦”

Yes, Susan has my vote.

Have things improved from the days when only white men with property had the vote? The answer is: yes, somewhat maybe, and no. Truthfully, until the stooges of capitalism are expelled, all life forms are in jeopardy. Prepare your children to make the revolution, please, even as we support social-democratic reform in the here and now.

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