the barn in fall

the barn in fall

Friday, October 7, 2011

Your Federal Tax Dollars At Work

Say hello to the Emerald Ash Borer.  Pretty color, huh?  Some time during the 1990's this little guy hitched a ride from Asia to the U.S., saw all the lovely ash trees, and said, "Yum!"  Then he and his larvae went to work - one more illegal immigrant making good in America.  And boy, did they ever.

Twenty years later, the result is hundreds of millions of dead and dying ash trees.  On our five and half acres alone, that amounts to a dozen or so mature trees, and several dozen half-grown trees.  They're our problem to deal with.  But along our tree-lined road where dead trees stand close to power lines, it's the county's problem: take down the trees before they take down the power lines.  That's a pretty damn expensive problem.

Here's where the Federal government comes in, with a grant to cut down the dead ash trees that are near power lines.  Only ash trees - don't mess with that government money and try to get your dead oak taken down, because these guys know the difference.  Two of these trucks were working in front of my house today, chain saws and wood chippers roaring.  They left me a pile of ash logs that, I have to admit, will make nice firewood once we cut them into shorter sections and split them.

As a result, there is now a much smaller chance that my cable, phone, and electricity will be taken out by the next big wind storm.  Plus, I get some free firewood.  So thanks for that, American taxpayers. 

And f-you, emerald ash borer.  I'd rather have my trees back.

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