Big Hat, No Cattle






The ranchers in South Dakota have lost their cattle.

A freak October blizzard roamed across the state earlier this week, depositing up to five feet of snow across the Black Hills, catching tens of thousands of cows stranded in pastures where they died of exposure.

This is a tragedy, make no mistake about it. These ranchers borrow huge amounts from the bank in anticipation of bringing those cattle to market and recouping their investment. Now, those cattle are gone, their corpses piled up three and four high in ditches. I’m not sure what role insurance plays in this transaction, but, given the article’s aura of gloom and doom, we can assume that people are gonna get hurt.

I read this story in the New York Times on Tuesday, 10/16. A few fractions of an inch above this story was another story, about the end of the Government Shutdown.

Now, I know, I know. No one wants to hear about the government shutdown and the debt ceiling debate anymore, about how one political party, possessed of one portion of one house of Congress and loser of the popular vote in Senate and presidential races in recent years, sought to emancipate the American people from health care reform and a federal debt that has been declining as a share of gross domestic product since 2009. Continue reading