Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest In the 1989 movie, Field of Dreams, there is a magical scene where Shoeless Joe Jackson appears from the cornfield surrounding the ball diamond that farmer Ray Kinsella has built. Shoeless Joe inquires, “Is this heaven?” Ray Kinsella replies, “No, it’s Iowa.”The other morning, while reviewing some online legal updates, I discovered a case pending in federal court in the Hawkeye State. My immediate thought was, “Is this hell? No, it is Iowa.”Let me explain. The Des Moines Water Works (a regional utility that provides drinking water) sued three rural, northwest, sparsely populated Iowa counties (Sac, Calhoun and Buena Vista) in federal court. All three operate drainage districts. The lawsuit accuses the counties of threatening the health of 500,000 central Iowans by discharging large amounts of nitrate from drainage ditches into the Raccoon River without a federal permit, in violation of the Clean Water Act.This is creative lawyering, to say the least. The utility is arguing that pollution that originated on scattered farms is subject to permit requirements set out in the U.S. Clean Water Act, which has always exempted runoff from farms from regulation. Agricultural surface water runoff has been exempt because it comes from many sources. Typically, the Clean Water Act is designed to require permits that limit pollution from single sources or “point sources” that can be regulated. These facilities, which include some large livestock confinement operations, as well as sewage treatment plants and factories, regularly emit pollution that can be directly measured. In the case of runoff, the nitrogen can come from farms, yards, golf courses and other sources, and it would be difficult, perhaps impossible, to trace back to specific sources.Des Moines Water Works asserts that the water in question in the lawsuit is not surface water, but ground water because it flows from field tiles. Iowa has over 3,000 drainage districts. Like much of the Midwest, Iowa is prime agricultural land because of field tile. It will be interesting to see how this argument plays out in federal court. For years, farm drainage tile has not been considered a point source of pollution.What is disturbing is the behavior of Des Moines Water Works. They point the finger directly at agriculture for nitrates in the water in Des Moines, yet this same utility dumps the nitrate they remove back into the river that heads downstream toward Ottumwa. What’s good for the goose…The trial is a year away. The legal fees to date have been high. Furthermore, the case has divided citizens into anti-farmer and pro-farmer, with polls showing the anti group with more members. Farmers are disgusted because many have embraced wise environmental practices for years. In addition, Iowa recently passed the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy that offers multiple methods farmers can use to voluntarily address environmental issues.Should the utility prevail, the U.S. EPA could make radical changes requiring permits of Iowa’s 3,000 drainage ditches that could lead to regulations on individual farms. This case could be precedential as other entities in other states march to the courts. It is also possible that the EPA could install a general permit category for farms that would change little.If the counties win, voluntary conservation efforts continue. The bad will generated by legal action, however, likely remains.It seems to me that the goal of safe drinking water is universal. It is unfortunate that the utility chose to sue rather than to work towards the common goal. To date, the only winners are the lawyers who are profiting from this divisive action.In the meantime, I watch for updates about this case and hope for a happy ending. And I think of that scene from Field of Dreams. “Is this heaven?” “No, it’s Iowa.”
NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 12: Sports media personality Mike Golic attends the Annual Charity Day hosted by Cantor Fitzgerald, BGC and GFI at Cantor Fitzgerald on September 12, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for Cantor Fitzgerald)ESPN radio host Mike Golic will attempt an interesting feat Thursday morning. Golic, in response to a bet from Jon “Stugotz” Weiner over at The Dan Le Batard Show, will try to eat 36 mini-doughnuts in an hour, live on-air during Mike & Mike. Stugotz accomplished the feat in a three-hour time period last week, but had a rough time in the process. Tomorrow, @espngolic will attempt to eat 36 powdered mini donuts in ONE HOUR! Retweet if you think he will do it. https://t.co/x9qtyV0uaC— Mike & Mike (@MikeAndMike) November 11, 2015Wondering just how big these doughnuts are? Here’s a shot of Stugotz’ plate before he started chowing down.Happy Thursday from the @LeBatardShow!!! pic.twitter.com/KMf6a53O2F— Charlie Hulme (@charlie_hulme) November 5, 2015The stakes? Should Golic finish the doughnuts in an hour, Stugotz will have to shave his head. If Golic cannot get through them, he’ll have to do something on the Le Batard Show’s “Grid Of Death.”Will he pull it off? We’ll find out tomorrow morning.
OSU senior forward Marc Loving (2) fistbumps with a fan during the Buckeyes’ game against Northwestern on Jan. 22. The Buckeyes lost 74-72. Credit: Nick McWilliams | Sports EditorIt’s been a rough season for the Ohio State men’s basketball team, and it could get a lot rougher after the team’s next game.The Buckeyes were embarrassed by then 11-10 Iowa in their last game, dropping a winnable game 85-72 in a contest that could have pointed the program in the right direction. OSU picked up a big win against Minnesota at home, but lost all momentum against the Hawkeyes.Simply put, the loss to Iowa was a low point for OSU. Even though the worst loss in terms of score came at the hands of Wisconsin, the Buckeyes looked totally outmatched by an Iowa team missing its leading scorer, Peter Jok. Now, with a 3-6 conference record and just nine games left to salvage anything from a season littered with missed opportunities, the Buckeyes must find a way to beat the Big Ten’s best team — Maryland. And given how OSU has played thus far, there is little to convince Buckeye fans of a possible win on Tuesday. Following the team’s loss to Northwestern, junior center Trevor Thompson expressed his views as to why the team was losing, and losing in such ugly fashion. “We have to play for Ohio State,” he said. “We have to play for the university and for each other. What happens is we start to play for ourselves and were not thinking about the team. We have to be selfless. That has to be consistent.”The Terrapins are 19-2 this season and have won six straight conference games. Highlighted by a tough defense and the dynamic scoring ability of junior guard Melo Trimble, Maryland is one of the toughest matchups OSU will have this season. After Iowa, OSU coach Thad Matta was straight to the point about what went wrong.“We’ve got to try harder,” Matta said. “We did some things defensively tonight that I’ve never, ever seen us do. And give Iowa credit, my god did they play well. We just couldn’t get the stops that we needed.”Against Maryland, OSU will have to get stops. The Terrapins are a team that might not light up the scoreboard with points, but will limit an opposing offense to an average of 65.8 points per game. By contrast, the Buckeyes average 73.4 points per game, but have suffered from a lack of output from upperclassmen like senior forward Marc Loving and redshirt junior guard Kam Williams. Although each have averaged 11.4 and 10.3 points per game, respectively, both have been wildly inconsistent.Both players have the lowest plus-minus mark of the OSU starters, as Loving has posted a 3.7 on average, while Williams averages a meager 2.9. Thompson has been one of the lone bright spots for the Buckeyes, averaging 10.5 points and 9.2 rebounds per game this season in his starting role. However, against Iowa, he failed to score in 13 minutes, and fouled out in the second half. Although a rebound for Thompson is likely against Maryland, OSU will need stronger output from Williams and Loving for the rest of the season if anything is to come for the Buckeyes. After the loss to Northwestern, Williams stood up in the locker room, and addressed the team. “We need everybody, going into a basketball game, to have the same, positive, common goal to win the game,” he said. “Not stats, not how many rebounds I can get or how many points I can get. The ultimate thing we are trying to achieve is to win basketball games. That’s why it’s a team game.”Williams might be standing up,expressing his views vocally and trying to rally the troops, but OSU has little hope if play does not improve. Maryland rolls into Columbus on Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the Schottenstein Center.Prediction: Maryland 83, Ohio State 69.
Trailing by four shots heading into the Memorial’s final round, round one co-leader Justin Rose shot a near-flawless 66 on Sunday to claim his first career PGA tour victory at 18-under par.“For me, it’s a great way to win,” Rose said. “And to win here at the Memorial, at Jack’s tournament, I couldn’t think of a better place to win my first tournament. It’s a great day.”Chasing three-round leader Rickie Fowler, Rose said he was able to stay focused on his game and let the rest take care of itself.“I knew that I was in the hunt all week, but I wasn’t playing golf like I was in the hunt all week,” he said. “I was just in the moment and I thought that paid off for me today.”Playing nearly mistake-free golf with just one bogey in the first three days, the youngster Fowler was unable to close it out with three bogeys and a double bogey in his final round.Knotted at 16-under par heading into the par-3 12th hole, Fowler made double bogey to drop two shots back and never held the lead again.“I was just trying to aim at the back bunker and cut it off a little bit there,” said Fowler. “The ball started going where I wasn’t trying to. So I just made a bad swing and paid for it.”Although Fowler’s final round 73 resulted in a second place finish at 15-under, he was still pleased with his overall performance this week.“It was an awesome week,” he said. “Obviously not the round that I wanted today, didn’t hit as many greens as I would like to, but we had a lot of fun.”Rounding out the top five were Bo Van Pelt and Ricky Barnes in a tie for third at 12-under and Ryan Moore, Phil Mickelson and Tim Petrovic tied for fifth at 11-under par.World No. 1 Tiger Woods finished out his week with an even par 72, leaving him in a tie for 19th at 6-under for the tournament.The PGA tour will head south next week for the St. Jude Classic in Memphis, Tenn., before heading to the famed Pebble Beach Golf Links in two weeks for the 2010 edition of the U.S. Open.
Barcelona are planning to employ the same tactics used to sign Phillipe Coutinho from Liverpool for Manchester United’s Paul Pogba, according to BristolLive.The midfielder has had a frosty relationship with Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho which he led to him being dropped to the bench for their second UEFA Champions League clash against Sevilla last season over both legs.Pogba is reportedly keen to leave the club after Jose Mourinho also criticized him after winning the World Cup.Report: Up to seven first team players out for United George Patchias – September 13, 2019 Manchester United have some serious injury problems with up to seven first-team players out.This Saturday, United have a Premier League clash with Leicester City….Barcelona are currently odds on favorite to sign Pogba ahead of Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain and the Spanish champions are planning to use the same strategy they employed with Phillipe Coutinho last summer for Pogba.Manchester United have no interest in selling their star player but Barca are prepared to wait till January to get their man as they did with Liverpool and Coutinho last season.The Catalan club have already signed Arturo Vidal from Bayern Munich but are keen to bolster their midfield options with the addition of Pogba as they look to mount an all-out offensive on the UEFA Champions League.