From goldenrod blossoms to political rage

I’m trying to learn how to send posts consisting of text and photo put together in an Evernote note to my blog in WordPress. Have attached a picture of goldenrod I took last summer on one of the rare days when the temperature wasn’t impossibly hot and I could enjoy a walk. The side of the two-rut road past the third limerock pit at my place was dense with blooms, probably in response to recent rain. The drought was supposedly past, but the water level in the pits was about as low as I’d ever seen it. Now, after six months more of decent rainfall, the water level has dropped even more.

The Southwest Florida Water Management District, fondly known as “Swiftmud,” does not publish aquifer levels on its website, but does provide information to the US Geological Survey for 2008, which publishes it. Since no other years are shown, residents in my part of Levy County can’t know what’s happening to the water under our feet without making calls to Tampa and being put on hold.

The Suwannee River Water Management District does give maps for three years, 2002, 2005, and 2009, that indicate no change in the waterflow region where I live. This limited data hardly shows historical trends and the most recent, 2009, is four and a half years old.

How can residents participate in any kind of democratic decision-making without information?

Damnation! This post was intended only as a test of a software function. Now I’m mad at the agencies that are supposed to be taking care of our water. Now I’m really determined to learn how to do this blogging business effectively so I can help get out the information. If you know of easily accessible information on aquifer levels, please leave a comment.

Sent from Evernote
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Author: Skipper Hammond

Skipper Hammond was born on the edge of Charlotte, N.C. in a time, in a neighborhood where children were free to play. She and her friends ran, biked, rode, explored and read. The entire neighborhood was their stage for the continuing plays Skipper created based on the stories they read. Cops and robbers, cowboys and Indians, British and American,Yankee and Confederate armies romped through woods, across fields and creeks, up and down streets until good guys prevailed or softball and hopscotch season arrived.  Then she grew up and went to the Woman’s College of the University of North Carolina in Greensboro. Tar Heel legislators at the time saw no reason to finance economics education for women, but Skipper contrived a major in economics by cobbling credits in business and history. Involvement in a series of strikes by textile workers led to graduate work at Cornell with a masters in Labor Union History and several years of union organizing in North Carolina, Virginia and Florida for the International Ladies Garment Workers Union.  After marriage and the birth of her son and daughter, Skipper, then living in Cambridge, Massachusetts, worked at jobs where she could punch out—stitcher, machinist, assembly worker, candy maker, database designer, economics journal editor—and still have the energy needed for the real work of political organizing for social and economic justice.  Her political work took the form primarily of writing and editing for movement publications, and when she moved from Cambridge to a farm in rural north central Florida, she began writing for the Ocala Star-Banner and Gainesville Sun, then founded the Williston Pioneer, where she was publisher, editor, reporter, ad salesperson and janitor. She also raised goats. She currently divides her time, unequally, between Williston, Florida, where she continues playing in the woods, and Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she invents stories. 

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