To hell with the people.  From NYT, Hundreds Protest Cuts in Water in California

With below-normal precipitation, many in the Central Valley have let their fields go fallow this spring. In March, the state projected that because of the drought as many as 23,700 full-time workers would go without jobs, and farmers would lose up to $477 million in revenue.

What they want and why:

Organizers are calling for a new canal that would divert water from the Sacramento River to Central Valley farms as well as a relaxation of the environmental protections given to threatened species like the delta smelt, a pinky-sized fish native to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, a critical aquatic byway for water from the wetter north part of the state.

Court rulings have limited pumping from the delta, while the drought has eliminated all federal water allocations to farms south of the delta for this growing season.

Critics say it’s all about the greedy farmers:

Still, some labor organizers and advocates for rural areas contend that the marchers’ goals reflect only the desires of agribusiness and not the real needs of farm workers.

Many of the protesters were paid by their employers to march in lieu of harvesting crops.

“In reality, this is not a farm worker march,” said Arturo Rodriguez, president of the United Farm Workers of America, the 27,000-member union founded by César Chávez, which did not participate in the march. “This is a farmer march orchestrated and financed by growers.”

In what alternate universe is there no connection between an operational business and that business’s employees’ welfare?  Inquiring minds want to know.

And you’ll be happy to hear that your insatiable demand for oil won’t be disturbing marine life any time soon.  Court Cancels Offshore Drilling

A program to expand oil and gas drilling off the Alaska coast has been canceled by a federal appeals court because of environmental concerns.

A three-judge panel in the District of Columbia says the Bush administration’s Interior Department failed to consider the offshore environmental impact and marine life before approving an oil and gas leasing program in the Beaufort, Bering, and Chukchi (CHOOK-chee) seas.”

I wonder how many environmental obstacles will stand in the way of Obama’s Crazy Train.  At least it won’t bother any swimming creatures.