Thursday, August 2, 2012

"Extreme Weather = Food Crisis?"

Historic drought and scorching heat are making headlines in much of the food producing areas of the globe. Russia, the Ukraine, China, parts of Europe and over 50% of U.S. counties are now sweltering in the worst drought in nearly a half-century. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim warned of "a food crisis that could leave the world's poorest people unable to afford to purchase increasingly scarce and costly food."

Lack of rain and heat in the 115-degree range are not only killing the corn, soybeans, wheat, sugar beets and rye, it's rippling through the food chain. Breeders of livestock and poultry across the Midwestern United States are beginning to sell or liquidate animals they cannot feed. On August 1st, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack designated 218 additional counties in 12 states as disaster areas, bringing the total for the 2012 crop year to 1,584 counties across 32 states! Drought in other countries only compound growing worries over the world food supply.

And let's face it, folks: Hungry people = unhappy people. Ultimately, drought can have serious health, social, economic, and political impacts with far-reaching consequences. Food and water are two of the most essential commodities for human survival. Without enough of either, conditions can become dangerous very quickly. Remember the Arab Spring? Back in early 2011, countries like Tunisia and Yemen became politically destabilized when the governments couldn't afford to subsidize food supplies. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations fears that as the drought creates a rise in food prices, it will drive millions deeper into poverty, triggering revolts. The U.N. believes that third world nations should brace for riots.

While the overall impact for the West probably won't be as dramatic, it could spell additional turmoil for an already stressed economy.

Words to the Wise: "This is what the Lord Almighty says: Consider how things are going for you! Now go up into the hills, bring down timber, and rebuild My house. Then I will take pleasure in it and be honored, says the Lord. You hoped for rich harvests, but they were poor. And when you brought your harvest home, I blew it away. Why? Because My house lies in ruins, says the Lord Almighty, while you are all busy building your own fine houses. That is why the heavens have withheld the dew and the earth has withheld its crops. I have called for a drought on your field and hills--a drought to wither the grain and grapes and olives and all your other crops, a drought to starve both you and your cattle and to ruin everything you have worked so hard to get." (Haggai 1:7-11)


  • Fox News:  Homeland Security gearing up for civil unrest at party conventions.
  •  Post Office defaults on $5 billion loan payment; USPS will be bankrupt by October, 2012.
  • CNBC: Massive crowds flood Chick-fil-A in show of support across the nation.
  • Fox News: Number of adult children in 20's and 30's moving back home in record numbers due to the "great recession"
  • Debka File: Khomeini warns Iran's top leaders: "We'll be at war within weeks."
  • USA Watchdog: Professional trader Rick Ackeman: "The next market meltdown is going to like the flash crash of a few years ago."
  • Columbia University: FDA approves ingestible sensor, a "digital pill" the size of a grain of sand that sends health information to doctors.

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