The Lowe Down



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Chan Lowe: Tar balls on the Potomac?


tidal.gifThere may be a few folks still around who remember the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.

The science of soil conservation was in its infancy, folks didn’t know about contour plowing, and when the wind started to blow, it scoured the topsoil right off the prairie.

When I lived out there, I heard a story that senators and congressmen from the great Midwestern farm states pleaded in vain for relief from a government that wasn’t used to being the handout of last resort. Remember, even Social Security was just getting off the ground. Folks tended to look after themselves, locally.

Besides, people didn’t travel as much back then, and there was no TV. So the evidence was mostly anecdotal, and lacked immediacy.

It finally got so bad that a wall of dust several thousand feet high blew all the way east and was visible from Washington, D.C. One senator gathered his colleagues on the Capitol balcony and said (I paraphrase), “Gentlemen, what you see before you is the State of Oklahoma.”

Finally, they voted for some funding.

So it may take something like tar balls in the Tidal Basin before these folks finally wean themselves off big oil’s teat and actually pass some laws and regulations that benefit the country instead of their own careers. Nothing like soiling someone’s own back yard to focus his attention.

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Comments

I was born in the mid-30's..(yes-older than dirt) I've heard about the dust bowl,which was a tragedy.
And the Oil Gusher now.? We may as well pee in the ocean, in hopes of having the tides rise for a good solution.
Adm. Thad Allen of the Coast Guard is suppose to be in charge of being the White House's "point-man". And what is he doing.? Having a cozy dinner with BP CEO Tony Hayward..Feasting & drinking at a mega expensive restaurant in New Orleans,(the Eleven 79) Tony has nothing to fear from the Gov't "watch-dog"....The fish rots from the head down..along with our environment, peoples jobs,etc,etc,. Welcome to the Oil Bowl.! !


The problem is the president can ban off shore drilling as much as he wants but past the 3 mile limit he has no control. There are at least 6 different countries currently drilling offshore of florida in the gulf. They will not stop.


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About the author
Chan LoweCHAN LOWE has been the Sun Sentinel’s first and only editorial cartoonist for the past twenty-six years. Before that, he worked as cartoonist and writer for the Oklahoma City Times and the Shawnee (OK) News-Star.

Chan went to school in New York City, Los Angeles, and the U.K., and graduated from Williams College in 1975 with a degree in Art History. He also spent a year at Stanford University as a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow.

His work has won numerous awards, including the Green Eyeshade Award and the National Press Foundation Berryman Award. He has also been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His cartoons have won multiple first-place awards in all of the Florida state journalism contests, and The Lowe-Down blog, which he began in 2008, has won writing awards from the Florida Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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