Posts Tagged ‘Drought’

Desolate and Dry, Texas Awaits Relief From Obama and Perry

Saturday, August 13th, 2011

No Relief in Sight

Rick Perry likes to point out how long it has taken President Obama to take notice of the crippling drought that’s been baking the landscape of Texas for two years, but the Texas Governor has bigger priorities these days.  Texans already know that Obama cares not for the Lone Star State, except wherever he can raise campaign cash among the few Texans still inclined to support him.  What has been more amazing is how little Rick Perry has managed to do about the situation on the ground in Texas, particularly given his oft-lamented concerns for States’ rights and the 10th Amendment to the Constitution.  So what is Perry’s answer to the drought?  After a prayer for rain, he’s off to South Carolina to pray for something else.  One can only imagine that he’d offer scant improvement over Obama, as he seems equally unconcerned about the crisis in the state he now governs.

The truth is that there isn’t a government answer to every problem, particularly some of the ones nature throws our way.  Still, it would be nice to know that one’s Governor was actually doing something proactive to the degree he’s able.  Most of Texas languishes under extended outdoor burn-bans and drought conditions that now threaten to wipe out the state’s entire agricultural base.  Cattlemen are beginning to sell off their herds for lack of feed and hay, and horsemen are now giving away their precious bloodstock because it costs more to keep a horse the span of a month than the horse will fetch at auction.  Recently, one thoroughbred breeder locally advertised his entire herd to any who want them.  Forty-two horses more will head for parts and fates ultimately unknown, if he can manage to give them away.

That’s the situation in which this author is quickly finding himself, like so many others in our region.  Between Governor Perry’s own sabotage of expanded gaming at our tracks, that would merely bring us on par with neighboring states, to the indolent excuses he makes about his own lack of capacity to do anything useful in this clear and present emergency, Perry’s no more help than Obama.  Even so simple a matter as helping local governments better manage their water resources has been far-removed from Perry’s plate of things to do as he gets ready for a presidential run.

Today, we received a notice in the mail from our local water utility that since the drought has been making things incredibly dry at this point, they have asked us all to reduce water usage to the bare minimum.  My wife and I looked at one another in grim astonishment:  We thought that’s what people would do on their own, anyway, since we’ve always done so ourselves.  Apparently, some small Texas towns are now on the verge of being without water.  Our own town is heading that direction, and the newsflash from Austin is: “Gone to South Carolina. Leave your message at the tone.”

It’s so dry here in the Texas black-lands that the once fertile soil, given to cracking and heaving in ordinary wet-dry cycles, is splitting wide open in places to a depth of three to four feet, and in runs of a half-dozen yards or more.  Normally pale green with a hint of brown this time of year, it’s been so dry for so long that our pastures  are now the dusty brown of nearly naked, twice-baked earth.  Before our eyes, what had once been the green and rolling grasslands are becoming a hell on Earth.

I, like may Texans, once had great hopes for Governor Perry, but hopes have turned to disappointment much as the country’s hopes for our current president have faded.  People understand that Governors can’t control the weather, just as Presidents can’t control all facets of the economy, but for once, it would be nice to believe they were even remotely concerned with those suffering under the negative conditions that sometimes prevail in weather patterns and markets.  At a certain point, you find that you’d be satisfied with simple and unwavering leadership that knows what’s right even when what’s easy or fast seems so much more alluring, but for Texans, such leadership is now fully absent as Governor Perry runs off in search of presidential glory.

As a conservative, I will wish him good luck, and for the people of America who think he’s a strong and genuine leader, as you may have once thought Obama to be, I want to wish you all good luck as well.  As I’ve reported in the past, he simply isn’t the right leader for America, if he’s a leader at all.

On the heels of the Obama disaster, if you elect Rick Perry, you’re going to need all the luck you can muster.