‘It Cannot Happen Here’

first_imgThe Director of the Gabriel L. Dennis Foreign Service Institute, Dr. Mohammed B.O.S. Kenneth, has vehemently condemned an online publication by some Islamic women indicating that Saudi Arabia is using Liberia as fertile ground to Islamize nine other countries in Africa.Dr. Kenneth, a one-time Minister Counselor at the Liberian Embassy in Beijing, China, and former Chief of Protocol of Liberia, told the Daily Observer that the article is a manipulation on the part of some people to turn Liberians against one another after experiencing years of civil war.“I read the article myself and realized that it is very erroneous and meant to fuel conflict among Liberians, who have experienced years of civil war. We should not give it prominence because it means no good for us,” he said.Dr. Kenneth noted that emphasis made about ULIMO-J being Muslim-dominated is completely contrary to the historical facts about Liberia.“The article being negatively reflective on Muslims puts Mandingoes and Vais — that constitute the Muslim population — on eye-sighting stage for monitoring, although it also reflected President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as the one Saudi Arabia is allegedly using to bring up an Islamic president to succeed her,” he stated.The Liberian Muslim diplomat did acknowledge that more and more West Africans are pouring into Liberia from Guinea, Sierra Leone, Ghana, Mali and Nigeria, which raises eye-brows as to whether some of members of Boko Haram in Northern Nigeria or extremists in northern Mali are not among them.Dr. Kenneth, a practicing Muslim, asserted that Liberian Muslims are people who truly go by ethics of the Koran that prohibits intolerance, disrespect for leaders and compatriots.“Liberian Muslims follow the Holy Koran and its ethics.  In the Koran, Muslims are taught to be tolerant, have respect for others and leaders.  Those who carry attacks in the name of al-Shabab, Boko Haram, al-Qaeda, and others are not true Muslims because there is nowhere in the Koran they are taught to wear suicide vest to blow off hotels and vehicles,” he stressed.He stated that given the understanding of Liberian Muslims, it is impossible for activities of these extremists to come to Liberia. No Muslim here is in support of such inhumane acts, he asserted.Commenting on concerns raised by Ambassador Wesley Johnson in Daily Observer’s May 7th edition, the Foreign Service Institute head said while Ambassador Johnson has his opinion, he believes that there are countries around Liberia with Muslim populations who are not on record for any extremist act.He consented that as government’s response to the article indicates, securities and other peace loving citizens are working in their confines to build a consolidated peace and democracy, not allowing any vice to divide Liberians.He noted that Liberia has inter-ethnic connections with all groups related to one another one way or the other, and that Liberian society is secular and pluralistic.With this societal makeup, Dr. Kenneth said it is not a joy for one group to see others affected by its (group) action, and there is no way that any activity of extremism can infiltrate the Liberian society.Editor’s Note: It is possible that the authors mistook ULIMO-J for ULIMO-K, which was in fact led by Alhaji Kromah.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Porter arraigned for murdering friend over old grievance

first_imgA 21-year-old man was on Tuesday remanded to prison by Acting Chief Magistrate Sherdel Isaacs-Marcus for killing a friend as revenge over an old grievance.Clayton AllenClayton Allen appeared at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts and was not required to plead to the charge which stated that on May 30, 2019, at Kamarang Landing, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), he murdered Godrell Joseph.Police Prosecutor Shellon Daniels told the court that on the day in question, the two men were seen consuming alcohol at a bar.However, after some time, Allen reportedly went outside, waited for Joseph and confronted him about an old grievance. This led to an argument.The suspect was under the influence when he sought out his revenge.It was at this time that the accused broke a beer bottle and stabbed the deceased to his neck. The injured Joseph was rushed to the nearest health centre where he succumbed to his injuries while receiving medical attention.It was reported that Joseph had allegedly cut the accused across his face two years ago.A police report was made and the accused was arrested. He later confessed to the heinous crime during a police investigation.The matter was transferred to the Kamarang Magistrate’s Court for June 17, 2019.last_img read more

Hamlin gets well in hurry at Dover

first_imgHamlin complained of a tender throat, had trouble breathing and dizzy spells. Then he got in the car for a 200-lap race. Hamlin said the illness shouldn’t affect him for today’s Cup race at Dover. “I get hot. I get cold,” he said. “I feel inadequate really.” The results looked like they could have come straight out of the Cup race. Martin Truex Jr., who won the Cup race on the Monster Mile in June, was second. Matt Kenseth finished third. Hamlin, Truex and Kenseth are part of the 12-driver field for the Chase for the Nextel Cup championship. “We just didn’t have the car all day long,” Truex said. “We almost pulled one off on the 20. He was really strong all day.” Hamlin was fastest in the final Cup practice earlier in the day for today’s second Nextel Cup Chase race. Mike Bliss and Reed Sorenson round out the top five. Series points leader Carl Edwards, another Chase driver, was sixth. ETC.: Kurt Busch was penalized and demoralized the last time he left Dover. His tantrum in the pits cost him 100 points and a coveted spot in the top 12 of the Chase standings. Thanks to a late surge over the final two months, the Busch recovered and qualified for NASCAR’s Chase for the Nextel Cup championship. Now the former Nextel Cup champ is back at the Monster Mile, mired in a similar points hole, with even less time to recover. He’s 102 points behind with nine races left. Another faulty part or a wreck could cost Busch and the No. 2 Dodge a chance to finish near the front of the field and all but end his shot at a second Cup championship. For a driver once known for his hot temper, Busch instead is keeping his cool. “To have a small setback in the beginning still gives you nine races to go to make up that small deficit,” said Busch, the 2004 champ. “No panic mode. We just hope this weekend at the Monster Mile is better for us.” Smith’s Las Vegas 350 Polesitter Travis Kvapil broke away from a tight pack with four laps to go and held to win the Craftsman Truck series race, while former Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve finished 21st in his series debut. Kvapil pulled away Johnny Benson and Jon Wood at the end to match Mike Skinner and Ron Hornaday for the series lead with his fourth victory of the year. Skinner finished 13th to take over the season points lead from Hornaday, who placed 22nd. Skinner, with 3,070 points, has a three-point lead over Hornaday, who fell out of fourth place following a solo accident with 10 laps left. Benson was second, followed by Wood, Terry Cook and Erik Darnell. NHRA Fall Nationals Funny Car points leader Robert Hight failed to qualify for the O’Reilly Fall Nationals in Ennis, Texas, while Top Fuel driver Doug Herbert also dropped out to all but end his season title hopes. Three of Friday’s four qualifying leaders remained intact with J.R. Todd leading Top Fuel with a 4.541-second run, Tim Wilkerson topping Funny Car with a 4.787 and Greg Anderson fronting Pro Stock with a 6.668. The only change among the front-runners was Chip Ellis sneaking around Andrew Hines in Pro Stock Motorcycle with a double-track-record pass of 6.976 seconds at 191.32 mph Despite his DNQ, Hight remained in the points lead, but could certainly suffer if “Fast Jack” Beckman, Ron Capps or Gary Scelzi do well today. Second in the points, Beckman could do the most damage. He was in the No. 7 spot after a 4.851 in his Dodge Charger R/T. Scelzi was 10th with a 4.863, while Capps was 12th with a 4.884.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! From news services The checkered flag was the perfect tonic for the ailing Denny Hamlin Saturday in Dover, Del. Feeling weak and needing intravenous fluids before the race, Hamlin nearly threw in the towel. Good thing he held on, or else he would have missed out on bringing home a trophy. Hamlin shook off an illness and found the energy to dominate and win the caution-filled Busch Series race at Dover International Speedway for his third win of the season. “I need a nap,” Hamlin said after the race. Hamlin can on sleep on this: With the yellow flag seemingly dropping every few laps, a helmet fighting for space with the cars on the track, and full-time Cup drivers nipping at his bumper, Hamlin stayed out of the care center and parked himself in Victory Lane. Swig that soda? No thanks, he sprayed the drink on his crew. He needed water. Winning sure has a way of curing the nastiest symptoms. “It makes your mind away from it, for sure,” Hamlin said. last_img read more

Banning softball team enjoys celebrity

first_img“We definitely feel on top of the world,” Moeai said. “Usually in the morning, I wake up and I’m so tired. But since we won the game last week, I can’t wait to wake up and go to school. We’ve never had the spotlight before and it’s been great, but we’re trying to stay humble because we have one more game left.”Cruz said she has enjoyed the support from the Banning student body.“Everyone knows who we are now,” Cruz said. “It’s been a long time since Banning made it to a City final. Every time we hear someone congratulate us or tell us that we’re one game closer, it’s not pressure. Rather, it’s a feeling inside of us we never felt before, and it brings out a lot of excitement in us.”Most of the Pilots were 5 years old or younger the last time Banning made a City final in softball in 1993. Both Moeai and Cruz were 2? years old at the time.Espinoza said he is taking a page from the Rose Bowl and has planned several major team festivities.The Pilots already had a fun golf tournament at their field and a postgame pizza party Friday.Then the Pilots made a team trip to Universal Studios Sunday.This weekend, Espinoza said he is taking the team to the Arizona softball regional to watch the University of Arizona, the alma mater of his sister, Laura, in Tucson.Then the Pilots will make it home Sunday for a trip to Magic Mountain.“I’m trying to make this an experience they’ll never forget,” Espinoza said. “It took us 13 years to get back here the last time, and we’re not guaranteed of returning to this game next year, so we’re making the most of it. Winning the game would be nice, but I want the girls to be able to take this with them for the rest of their lives.”As far as winning the game, even Espinoza said San Pedro is the odds-on favorite. The Pirates are making their seventh City title game appearance.The thing about the Pilots is that they are scrappy, hard-nosed and don’t concede anything. They split with San Pedro in the season series.“San Pedro’s a great team, but our team is so unpredictable and we always have a chance,” Moeai said. “I’ve never played on a team with so much fire, so much heart.”Shining stars: Devin Drag and Billy Sulentor, two former Mary Star pitchers, played pivotal roles in helping Chapman College win its second straight NCAA Division III West Region baseball title.Next up is the Division III College World Series in Appleton, Wis., on Friday.Drag, the national ERA leader at 0.80, posted a 7-2 win over Trinity in the quarterfinals and pitched the final four innings to earn the win in a 4-3 come-from-behind win over Texas Lutheran in the final. Drag is 9-1 this season.Sulentor, a left-hander, threw a six-hitter with six strikeouts and no walks to beat George Fox, 7-1, in the semifinals.Drag and Sulentor made the All-West Region tournament team. Both were members of the Stars’ 2001 CIF Division V finalist team.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhicker: Clemson demonstrates that it’s tough to knock out the champIt’s a major accomplishment for a sports program that has not made a City title game appearance in any sport since the football team’s improbable 2000 City title.“It’s a huge deal for the school and an even bigger deal for the community,” Espinoza said. “This has definitely put a charge into our school. The girls are walking around like movie stars.“The community is also in an uproar. I’ve received more phone calls of congratulations in the last couple of days than I normally get in a month. A lot of people have come out, offering their support and sometimes even donations.“We’re going into UCLA deep, with a lot of people.”Moeai, who delivered the game-wining hit in the semifinal against Carson in the bottom of the seventh, said the spotlight has been unexpected. Briana Moeai said classmates have asked for her autograph.Mika Cruz said the Banning softball players get high-fives and congratulations from classmates they’ve never met. Coach Jesse Espinoza said the Pilots have been embraced by a proud community eager to lend its support.The Pilots certainly have been enjoying the red-carpet treatment they’ve received since advancing to the L.A. City final, where they will face Marine League rival San Pedro on May 31 at UCLA’s Easton Stadium at 4 p.m.last_img read more

MALIN HEAD GETS A €400,000 FUNDING BOOST

first_imgMalin Head in all its glory. Pic by malinhead.netMore than €396,000 is be awarded to Donegal County Council for a second phase in the development of visitor facilities at Malin Head.The allocation has been welcomed by Fine Gael Minister Joe McHugh TD.Minister McHugh, “I am delighted that Phase II of the Malin Head project has been given the go ahead for works to commence. This work will include: Road widening to accommodate passing bays and associated drainage improvements and surfacing; Extending existing car park facilities to incorporate twenty one additional car and bus parking spaces; and the development of a new toilet block. “Malin Head plays a key role along the Wild Atlantic Way as Ireland’s most Northerly Point, it is a priority location along the route and brings great benefits from tourism figures, which are on the increase. These works will enhance the experience by providing essential visitor facilities and present new opportunities for businesses and tours for individuals and groups at Malin Head.”“Progress however, has not been thanks to any one group – it is a direct result of the community effort and buy in from the collective. I have worked closely with my colleague Councillor Bernard McGuinness on this project and trying to drive it forward. There has also been a great deal of drive from Donegal County Council to get the project off the ground, collaborating with Failte Ireland and working hard to secure this funding.”Also welcoming today’s announcement, Fine Gael Councillor Bernard McGuinness said today is a very important day for Malin Head, but also for the Inishowen Peninsula.“We have seen the increase in tourist numbers coming to visit this area and the developments that have been confirmed today are essential if we are to develop Malin Head into its full potential. I want to acknowledge the work and commitment of the whole community, who have ensured that this project was kept on the agenda of Failte Ireland and Donegal County Council.” Following on from this Fáilte Ireland will be working closely with Donegal County Council on a Malin Head Experience Development Plan that will incorporate the wider Inishowen area. The plan is necessary because while Malin Head is recognised as the main attraction that will entice visitors up to the most northerly point of the island, the site in itself will not be sufficient to retain them for long. The extended ‘dwell time’ that is much sought after will actually be achieved by the range of ‘Supporting Experiences’ that exist and can be developed within the wider Inishowen Peninsula. Donegal County Council will work closely with Fáilte Ireland on this Plan to help ensure the area reaches its tourism potential.The funding builds on Fáilte Ireland’s ongoing work to develop the Wild Atlantic Way and follows a recent announcement that photo markers and information points are being installed at all the discovery points along the route, including those in Donegal.MALIN HEAD GETS A €400,000 FUNDING BOOST was last modified: December 15th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegalfundingMalin Headlast_img read more

Distribution of Iraqi constitution goes slowly

first_imgBAGHDAD, Iraq – Residents of one of Baghdad’s most insurgent-hit neighborhoods received copies of Iraq’s draft constitution Thursday, though some refused to take it and some shopkeepers balked at passing it out, fearing reprisals by militants determined to wreck the crucial Oct. 15 referendum. Insurgents continued their wave of violence with attacks in and around the capital, including the suicide bombing of a minibus, that killed at least 20 Iraqis and an American soldier. Despite the bloodshed, Iraqis in the southern Baghdad neighborhood of Dora had their first look at the document they will vote on in nine days, though distribution of the U.N.-printed blue booklets – emblazoned “The constitution is in your hands” – got off to a slow start elsewhere. “If we like it, we will vote yes. If we don’t, we’ll say no,” said Lamia Dhyab, a Shiite woman in a head-to-toe veil. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 She and other Dora residents got copies Thursday morning along with their monthly government-subsidized rations of rice, soap, cooking oil and other staples. The constitution is being distributed through the rationing system because some 80 percent of Iraqis have been enrolled in it since the days of U.N. sanctions against Saddam Hussein. Hamza al-Baidhani, 60, said the rations distributor he went to refused to pass out the booklets, claiming gunmen threatened to burn his business. “I wish that the Iraqi forces will be responsible for distributing the copies,” he said. About two dozen boxes of the booklets were found thrown in a Dora garbage dump – apparently a sign of opposition or of shopkeepers’ fears of having the document around. Al-Qaida in Iraq has called for increased attacks during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, which began this week, and more than 290 people have been killed in attacks the past 11 days, many of them Shiites. In Thursday’s deadliest assault, a suicide bomber boarded a minibus packed with 14 passengers – officers going to the police academy and students and workers headed home to the Shiite district of Sadr City. The bomber, seated by the driver, set off his explosives belt as the bus passed a police patrol. The bus was left a burned-out husk. The U.S. military warned of more violence but said it was making progress in improving security ahead of the referendum and that two major offensives in the Sunni heartland of western Iraq would help provide a safe atmosphere for the vote. U.S. and Iraqi officials had hoped the drafting of the constitution would unite the country’s disparate factions; instead, it has sharply divided them. While Shiite and Kurdish leaders overwhelmingly support the charter, moderate Sunni Arab leaders are urging their followers to vote no, hoping to defeat a constitution they say will fragment Iraq. Some 5 million copies arrived in Iraq on Monday, but distribution does not appear to have started in the north and south, where the constitution is expected to pass by a wide margin. In Basra and Hillah, major Shiite towns in the south, no copies have been passed out, nor in Nineveh – a mixed northern province of Sunnis and Kurds that could be crucial to the constitution’s passage or rejection. Kurdish-language copies had not yet reached many Kurdish areas. Parts of Baghdad were expected to start seeing their copies in the coming days. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Arrest bulletin issued for slaying suspect

first_imgWHITTIER — The Sheriff’s Department on Thursday issued a special bulletin for the arrest of murder suspect Michael Henry Jaimez, 25, of Santa Fe Springs in the Aug. 25 shooting death of Aron Adagio of Downey. A flier issued by the department describes Jaimez as a known gang member who sometimes uses the names “Trouble” and “Flaco.” Authorities believe he is still in the Whittier/Santa Fe Springs area and knows he is wanted by the law. Adagio was shoot to death just outside a 7-Eleven store in Pico Rivera. Two other suspects in the shooting are in custody. Man guilty of arson, murder in wife’s death WHITTIER –A Whittier man has been convicted of first-degree murder for setting his wife on fire during a fight at the couple’s home last year. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week A Norwalk Superior Court jury Tuesday convicted Steve Pedroza after an eight-day trail. He was found guilty of murder and arson, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said On June 20, 2004, Pedroza and his wife, Teresa Rodriguez, fought because he had gone out drinking with friends to a nightclub in Bellflower. At one point, Rodriguez got a can of gasoline, intending to pour it over Pedroza’s tools, said Whittier Police Department spokesman Officer Alan dela Pena. The couple struggled, and in doing so, got gasoline on their clothes. Pedroza then lighted a paper from the kitchen stove and threw it at Rodriguez, who received burns over 75 percent of her body. She died July 1 this year. Hospital’s pediatric unit to reopen NORWALK — Norwalk Community Hospital, 13222 Bloomfield Avenue, will celebrate the reopening of its pediatric unit with a ribbon-cutting ceremony from noon to 3 p.m. Tuesday. They ceremony will include lunch, presentations to welcome new doctors and raffles. For more information, call (562) 863-4763. Candyland scheduled Monday at Biola LA MIRADA — Biola University students will for the eighth year in a row hold Candyland, a free event for families in the community, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Monday in the Alpha Chi Residence Hall on the campus, 1380 Biola Ave. Enter at the Biola entrance off La Mirada Boulevard. The event, which features candy, games, prizes, movies and a gigantic bounce house, is the schools’ and students’ way of providing a safe alternative to trick-or-treating for local children. For more information, call (562) 777-4061. La Leche plans informational meeting WHITTIER — La Leche League of Whittier will hold an information meeting for mothers and mothers-to-be who want to learn more about breast feeding. The meeting will be held at 9:45 p.m. Nov. 8 at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, 11345 Miller Road. For more information, call (562) 448-9226. Hospital’s mobile unit to offer flu shots LA MIRADA — Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital’s mobile health clinic, Care Force One, will offer a limited amount of flu shots to persons in high-risk groups from 9 to 11 a.m. Nov. 14 at the La Mirada Activity Center, 13810 La Mirada Blvd. People eligible are seniors 65 or older and those with chronic diseases. Shots will be given on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, call (562) 902-3160 or visit www.cityoflamirada.org. Halloween event for families planned WHITTIER — United Friends of the Children Pathways Transitional Living Program will host a Halloween bash for Whittier families from 4 to 6 p.m. Monday at 13939 Coteau Drove. Free food, games, prizes, face-painting and a safe environment for children will be offered. For more information, call (310) 566-2285. From staff reports160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

49ers select Utah punter Mitch Wishnowsky, linebacker Dre Greenlaw

first_imgSANTA CLARA — Mitch Wishnowsky, a former Aussie rules football player who took up punting in 2014, was the 49ers’ first selection Saturday in the NFL draft. Wishnowsky was selected in the fourth round, No. 110 overall.Later, picking in the fifth round at No. 148, the 49ers took Arkansas linebacker Dre Greenlaw as part of a trade with Denver. With the first of three picks in the sixth round, the 49ers took Stanford tight end Kaden Smith at No. 176, then selected Vanderbilt tackle Justin Skule …last_img

Dlamini Zuma aims for African unity

first_img16 July 2012Strengthening African unity and advancing the transformation of the continent are top of the agenda for the newly elected chairperson of the African Union Commission, South African Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.“I would like to make a contribution like any African citizen,” Dlamini Zuma told reporters at a press conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Sunday, just hours before leaders attending the AU summit voted for their organisation’s top job.“I would like to make a contribution to our organisation, that’s what has motivated me to come back,” she said.Asked what she would do differently if she were head of the AU Commission, Dlamini Zuma emphasised that unity within the AU was her priority, but added that she would need some space to familiarise herself with the “ins and outs” of the continental body.She highlighted her experience as a foreign minister for almost a decade as among the skills that would work to her advantage.Dlamini Zuma also dismissed claims that the issue of the election of a chairperson had divided the African Union.“I think an election in any democracy is a competition between a number of candidates for any position. They stand and get voted and whoever wins, wins.“I don’t think any election should be seen as divisive … whoever wins here today we should all support, irrespective of where we were at the beginning of the election.”South Africa’s Presidency said last week that southern African countries had nominated Dlamini Zuma because she had the required skills and competence to lead the AU’s executive arm.“The region is driven by the objective of transforming the AU into an efficient and effective continental body,” the Presidency said.Dlamini Zuma went on to win Sunday’s vote, becoming the first woman, and first member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), to head the AU Commission.Source: SANews.gov.zalast_img read more

Red states, blue states and green water

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Matt ReeseI have been doing this writing/reporting/interviewing job for a while now. One of the first things I learned was, even at the risk of making myself sound dumb, I always try to admit my lack of knowledge about something and ask the questions needed to amend it. This is a good general policy and, in my case, it is important for very selfish reasons.If I don’t know something and ask a dumb question to get the answer, I look silly to that person. If I do not ask the question and write about something I do not really know about, then I instead end up looking silly to thousands of readers. A lack of understanding has a way of compounding problems moving forward. In short, if you don’t know, do the leg work to find out the answers before you take action.Thus far, Ohio agriculture has been pushing (fairly successfully) for this very strategy in terms of the ongoing water quality challenges in the state. That appears to be changing, though, as political pressure to address the complex problem increases.If I took a poll, I would imagine that 100 out of 100 Ohioans would want to drastically reduce or eliminate harmful algal blooms in Ohio’s lakes. Zero out of 100 Ohioans would definitively know how to accomplish that goal, though I am sure some would act like they had the solution without really knowing the answer. One of those Ohioans, apparently, would be Gov. John Kasich.There have been agricultural rumblings about this for awhile now, but last month in the Cleveland Plain Dealer it said this: Kasich, speaking to Ohio newspaper publishers Wednesday, said he was disappointed the legislature hasn’t acted to further restrict fertilizer application, which directly contributes to algal blooms in Lake Erie…Kasich said he supports farmers, too, but something should be done to address the minority of farmers who pollute the lake. Kasich spokesman Jim Lynch said an executive order is in the works, but the details have not yet been determined.With experts who have studied the details of water quality for their entire careers unable to come up with clear solutions, it seems certain the contents of the executive order are likely to fall short of successful, whatever they are. Kasich himself has repeatedly demonstrated a lack of basic agricultural understanding and, recently, he even struggled with the specifics of his administration’s recent proposal for the Lake Erie impairment designation. In a gubernatorial gaff, Kasich muddled his way though responses to questions at the Michigan Press Association convention in Lansing on May 11 concerning the topic. MLive (a Michigan-based news website) reporter Garret Ellison asked straight-forward questions and got flustered responses. Here is an excerpt about Kasich’s plans to regulate:John Kasich: So sir, you know, part of leadership is not just to bang the table and get out a sledgehammer to get your way. I think we’ve seen a lot of that lately. It doesn’t work very well. So that’s the way that I lead, and we’ll see where this goes. And when you raise phosphorous, that’s all from fertilizer, okay? I answered that question. So you came up with these terms or whatever and I’m telling you we’re working on it. And we are reducing, but we’re going to have to have even more action done.Garret Ellison: You mean mandatory action, or voluntary action?John Kasich: No, no, no. We’ll have regulatory action, okay? …. And by the way I would probably have to do it unilaterally because we’ll never get it through the legislature, okay?The interview, though embarrassing, will be algae under the bridge compared to the perceived foolishness of the Kasich Administration after passing executive orders to fix the problem and inevitably failing. After running a campaign and getting elected as governor (twice) on an anti-regulation pro-business platform, it seems shortsighted (at best) for Kasich to throw in some late-term regulations that will undoubtedly add bureaucratic hoops for farmers to jump through and undoubtedly NOT solve the problem of harmful algae in Lake Erie. Piling more rules on agriculture — already among the most heavily regulated industries in Ohio — is not the answer.In contrast to the politically driven and premature action of Kasich’s executive order plans directed at regulating fertilizer, Ohio agriculture has invested millions into proactively asking the challenging questions to determine the real causes of the problems and finding some real solutions. This has certainly proven to be a challenging endeavor and the process has not been quick. Finding real solutions will continue to take more time. As Joe Cornely with Ohio Farm Bureau sagely told the Cleveland Plain Dealer, “We’re not saying go slow, we’re saying be smart” and “We’re not going to be able to fix a problem like that or agriculture’s piece of the problem in a fashion where things get done overnight.”The slow progress in improving water quality is understandably frustrating for residents of places like Toledo where issues with harmful algae in the water are a part of life and there is no doubt political pressure is mounting. Kasich is likely yearning for the support of the 100% of people who want to improve water quality as he considers another presidential run after his time as Ohio’s governor is up. But throwing together regulations that are not based on the reality of what is happening will not make the water better any faster. Those regulations will only succeed in bogging down rural Ohio and upsetting rural America. Who was it that won the presidential election for Donald Trump again?Kasich has already illustrated his lack of understanding regarding agriculture and water quality numerous times, and I think if he does make a run for the White House he’ll find that an August/September algal bloom is not all that far removed from the November elections. By taking the plunge into the murky waters of more nutrient regulation, any future “Kasich for President” campaign may end up focused less on red states and blue states, and more on the green water in one state.last_img read more