dust bowl blues

Fires Rage & Farms Dry Up Across the Oklahoma-Texas New Dust Bowl

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My daddy plowed the ground and promised someday we would leave this run-down mortgaged Oklahoma farm.A devilish hoax called Global Warming is wreaking havoc on the un-ironically named “Dust Bowl,” where the worst drought since the 1920s is turning cropfields to scorched earth while savage wildfires turn the remaining forests into, well, scorched trees. The rains never arrived during “rainy season” and now it’s only the second week of Spring and the whole godforsaken place from the Colorado Plateau to the Gulf Coast is dried up or in flames. Says a cold-hearted robot known as the U.S. Drought Monitor: “Many drought indicators in east-central Texas have reached the Exceptional Drought (D4) level, and if rain does not materialize soon, intensification of the current drought is likely.” Get the Model A loaded up and California bound, and tell old Uncle John Joad to load up the shotguns lest the murderous capitalist-swine bankers try to stop us on the way out.

Of course, California isn’t in too good a shape, either — if you ain’t got the Do-Re-Mi, at least.

(And, in remembrance of poor old Kurt Cobain, who blew his brains out 17 years ago yesterday, here’s the Nirvana song called “Do Re Mi,” which has nothing to do with the Woody Guthrie song other than that they both have acoustic guitars and nasal vocals.) [MSNBC]

About the author

A writer and editor of this website from 2006 to early 2012, Ken Layne is occassionally seen on Twitter and writes small books and is already haunting you from beyond (your) grave.

View all articles by Ken Layne


Hey there, Wonkeputians! Shypixel here to remind you to remember our Commenting Rules For Radicals, Enjoy!

  • ttommyunger

    Rain goes out, fire comes in, never a miscommunication…

  • baconzgood

    This is ALL Obama's fault.

    • LabRodent

      Sounds better when you say its the BLACK Guy fault. covers alot more people.

    • Not_So_Much

      I trust Imhofe will be ginning up a committee to look into this black (not in a racist way, of course) magic devilry. He certainly won't be looking into of that scary "science" nonsense.

    • Jukesgrrl

      They haz droughts and stravation in afrika all the time. i rest my case!!!!!!!!11!

  • Lionel[redacted]Esq

    If only there was a scientific explanation of this, and something we could do. Oh well, guess I need to start handling snakes again.

    • Not_So_Much

      Science is stupid. Duh.

      Probably a perfectly good explanation in the book of Revelations or Damocles or something…

  • undeterredbyreality

    I'm lookin' forward to some o' that sweet, sweet breast milk.

    • Beowoof

      Just another opportunity for the adult nursing fetish.

    • sati_demise

      Its GMO now! Produced from GM cows

  • edgydrifter

    Obviously God is punishing us for not hating the homos enough.

    • SorosBot

      And for allowing women to control their own bodies.

    • widestanceroman

      Every day, I hate myself for not hating myself enough.

    • DustBowlBlues

      My arthritis has been bothering me a lot lately and that includes my brain, since I was sitting here pondering how these Xian nincompoops would explain this.

      Then edgy drifter points out the obvious. Thanks. I needed that. I think I'll test drive it next time I have to leave my comfy bunker and go to town for supplies.

      • ChessieNefercat

        I hope your little corner of Oklahoma is okay and not in flames?

        Well, actually, I suppose I hope that everyone's little corner of wherever is okay.

      • Crank_Tango

        you are at the top of the list for california citizenship dusty…

        we heat our homes with sustainable, locally grown medical marijuana btw, might do the trick for your arthritis.

    • Beowoof

      I thought they hated the homos quite a bit down there in Texass., It should be Californiacate and New York with all the weather troubles for not hating homos enough.

    • Oblios_Cap

      I'd hate them but they're so damned FABULOUS!

  • freakishlywrong

    Me, I'm pointing the ole' jalopy north this time, maybe as far north as soshalist Canada.

    • DashboardBuddha

      Swing by Maine and we'll go halfsies on a uhaul.

    • Ducksworthy

      Hmm. It is warmer than it used to be.

  • Sophist [غني عن ذلك]

    Global warming? Pfft, right. Look where all the fires are — it's pretty clear to me that it's all the result of an influx of flammable illegal immigrants. Build the dang fence already!

  • baconzgood

    Tex-ass farmer last Nov: GET GOV'MENT OFF MY LAND AND OUT OF MY LIFE!!!!!

    Same farmer in Apr: Why isn't the gov'ment coming on my farm to help me out?

    Hope you paid your local fire dept surcharge to put out your flaming children 'cause if'n not you're S-O-L. Sleep in the bed you made.

    • DeeJayKitteh

      To be fair, they've been happily accepting agricultural subsidies for years now. So they're not against government intervention in their lives, just government intervention that doesn't personally benefit them.

    • powersuit

      Nuthin' wrong with that! That's how the west was won!

  • baconzgood


  • metamarcisf

    The Okie drought is God's vengeance in retribution for that judge who stayed the anti-sharia amendment which lead to hundreds of little boys having their right hands cut off for masturbating in school restrooms. Why is no one else reporting THIS?

    • DustBowlBlues

      As the morans around here would describe it, "They don't let it get out." I've been listening to stupid people say that exact thing all my life. Now that I'm old and live in the country on a pension from Washington State, I'm going to start asking the obvious:
      "Who is 'they'?"

    • [redacted]hse

      The southpaws don't care.

    • ChessieNefercat

      "Why is no one else reporting THIS? "

      Because it didn't happen?
      Oh wait, I'm sorry. No evidence that it happened = proof it's being covered up (in tardland). Carry on!

  • hagajim

    This means a bunch of wingnuts will be moving to your neighborhood soon….because their properteee is now an arid wasteland.

  • GuanoFaucet

    But, but…anthropogenic global warming is a commie hoax because Al Gore is fat, and James Inhofe's grandchildren built an igloo on the National Mall the other year!

    • glamourdammerung

      You hit all of the teabagger reasons except the Clash song "London Calling" and a Newsweek cover.

    • DustBowlBlues

      You forgot to note Inhofe's position correctly. That's James Inhofe (R-Oil) to you, sir.

    • tessiee

      "global warming is a commie hoax because Al Gore is fat"

      Really, it's because Al Gore is fat?? I thought it was because he lied and said he invented the innertoobs.*

      *Yes, I know that didn't actually happen, but just because something is made up out of thin air doesn't mean that darned liberal media won't repeat it ad nauseam.

  • Gopherit

    I live in Tucson, and my cactus are dying from lack of water. I have to water my motherfucking cactus. The next person who says something about climate change being a hoax is getting a punch in the sack.

    • Ducksworthy

      You might want to consider the long term implications for real estate prices in Tucson.

  • CliveWarren

    If Global Warming exists, then why the fuck is it so hot in the middle of this blazing forest? In April!!! Riddle me that, libtards…

  • SayItWithWookies

    Well Texas is famously hardy and independent-minded, and especially after bragging about how their "the future is now" approach to their budget and their environment has led to prosperity for so many years, and even threatening secession rather than bow to the tyrannical EPA, I'm sure Rick Perry won't go begging for federal assistance. He'll probably be demanding it, saying it should've gotten there two years ago, and then cut taxes to fix it — and will probably be announcing this move while standing in a field, sleeves rolled up and wearing a cowboy hat.

  • neiltheblaze

    Oh, this isn't the result of the Global Warming Hoax – no sirree. It's God's Judgment.

  • Worthly[♬♪♬♪♫♪♬]Skum

    Allah's your daddy, Okies!

  • Giveusabob

    In light of this, I'm wondering if Sarah Palin may ultimately have a turn of heart like Rosasharn, but who am I kidding?

    • http://grandpaboy.blogspot.com/ seppdecker

      Wasn't Rosasharn more of a Bristol figure? Levi already fled Hooverville the Palin compound.

  • DownFist Troll

    Water conservation and fire departments are for commies! USA USA!

  • Nopantsmcgee

    Well this will teach the South to steal the industrial north east's electoral votes.

    • Jukesgrrl

      Naw, their not that good at learnin'. They already deep-fried them electoral votes and et 'em.

  • widestanceroman

    So, how's that faith-based climatology workin' out for ya?

    • emmelemm

      Pretty good, actually – didn't one of those Congress critter fucktards say we shouldn't try to stop climate change because it was God's way of speeding up the rapture?

      Mission rapidly being accomplished.

  • OneYieldRegular

    I'm waiting for DustBowlBlues to weigh in on this before commenting. But in the meantime, I'll provide this story of a student in my high school English class who, when we were offered an array of novels to read for a class assignment on American literature, listened to the choices then exclaimed, "I wanna read 'The Group of Rats'!"

    • http://wonkette.com Ken Layne

      I know! I thought she'd be first.

    • DaRooster

      That was basically it right?

      • OneYieldRegular

        Out of the mouths of babes…

    • DustBowlBlues

      Come on, comrades. It didn't take her long. This is busy news day around here. Spooky Doktor Tom was even on MSNBC a few minutes ago.

  • aguacatero

    The Africanized Bees love it hot and dry.

  • SudsMcKenzie

    Smells like a 2020 Ken Burns documentary.

  • http://wonkette.com Ken Layne

    Pulitzer Prize 4 literature.

  • glamourdammerung

    Using teabagger "logic", this simply means god is punishing Oklahoma for voting for McCain.

  • Poindexter718

    I'm opening a Christian/Adult bookstore on Rte. 66.

    • nounverb911

      Make that Route 666 and you'll be in like Flynn.

    • widestanceroman

      Drain your dicks on Rte. 66?

    • glamourdammerung

      But then you have to have two sections: one for the Christian books and porn and the other for the adult books.

      • DustBowlBlues

        And the porn side has to be windowless. My mother always said the Baptists wanted to keep Oklahoma a dry state because no could see them buy whiskey when the bootlegger came to the back door. (Bootlegger being the kind who drove to Texas and bought booze. Not homeade).

        You can make a bundle on vice from the Fundies, as long as they can keep it quiet.

    • widestanceroman

      I hear tell the Power n' Glory Holes are quite the cash cow in these establishments.

  • randcoolcatdaddy

    I hate reruns. Especially of decades involving Dust Bowls, Great Depressions, and nothing on the radio but Hitler admirer Father Coughlin.

  • Goonemeritus

    My mother-in-law was a dust bowl Okie; I always greet her with the question “Are those people bones Ma”

    • Boojum_Reborn

      We used to eat people bones. But then, my Dad was from West Virginia and my Mom was from Kentucky by way of Texas and Tennessee.

  • nounverb911

    "Get the Model A loaded up and California bound"
    Old California bumper sticker:

    Welcome to California, now go home!

  • http://wonkette.com/ FlownOver

    Just don't try heading north. The rest of the central tier already has its fair share of batshit.

  • sezme

    Fucking rain: how does that work?

    • ChessieNefercat

      Well, I'd say the hydrological cycle, but Imhofe and and associates have proven that science doesn't exist, sooo, rain goes down, rain goes up?

  • http://guyclinch.blogspot.com GuyClinch

    Maybe all the drought/fire/shitstorm red-staters can emigrate to Mexico, yes? I'd rather have the brown illegals anyway. Of course, that would be really mean to our friends south of the border. Like a declaration of war, really.

  • V572..whatever

    OT, but: Why, God, why?

  • http://wonkette.com Zvi_Bleindmeis

    We had some dime-sized hail in Pensacola Monday night! (I think it also hit Mobile, or America's Rectum™.)

  • Mumbletypeg

    Today we are all, or on the brink of becoming, Muley the "Graveyard Ghos' " ~

  • genxr

    Not to worry. We'll solve this by burning more coal.

  • BlueStateLibel

    Well, at least we know now which side's God on now, don't we? Plenty-o water up here north.

    • baconzgood

      It's raining here right now. Actually the rivers have flooded like 3 times in the last 2 months.

  • http://wonkette.com Zvi_Bleindmeis

    You referring to brother Merle Haggard?

  • JoshuaNorton

    Show's how much YOU know. There is no global warming. Carbon dioxide is a healthy and natural gas. Just ask any right wing corporate shill.

    Of course, I can't get one of the "Carbon dioxide is good for us" morons to prove it by pulling a plastic bag over their head and leaving it there.

    Wonder why.

    • Ducksworthy

      Keep trying.

      • ChessieNefercat

        I guess it's up to you to pull one over their hands. For science!

  • MistaEko

    A muslim socialist is any sonuvabitch who's askin' for a quarter when we're payin' twenty!

  • http://grandpaboy.blogspot.com/ seppdecker

    Too many book-burnings.

  • SorosBot

    Since the effected areas are all the god-fearin', traditional values havin', cousin lovin' red states, how will Pat Robertson claim this is all the liberals' fault for inviting god's wrath?

    • widestanceroman

      As always, he just cold will.

      You can't explain that.

    • not that Dewey

      Hurricane Katrina hit Mississippi, fer chrissakes, and that didn't stop him. He'll find a way.

      • SorosBot

        Yeah, but its' major victim was a city filled with very urban people known for debauchery; that made it easy.

  • http://hong-kong-actresses.blogspot.com/ donner_froh

    Generally something horrible happening in Texas or Oklahoma is a good thing but just maybe not this time.

    • OneDollarJuana

      Especially this time! These arrogant, ignorant, pissant, incoher-ant assholes need some comeuppance.

  • Fukui_sanYesOta

    There's an easy solution to this. We all saw that "National Day of Prayer" thing yesterday, right? Well, all these farming types need to do is stop praying and god will, uh, smite them with rain. Problem solved, for Jeebus!


  • OneDollarJuana

    "Well I must be an Okie, or a Mexican"

    Larry Hosford, Salinas

    • AJW@[redacted]

      Upfist for excellent, if obscure, Larry Hosford reference!

  • Dudleydidwrong

    According to that preacher bible book there were ten plagues that YHWH used on the Egyptians to cause Old Pharaoh to let Moses buy a plane ticket out of Cairo:
    Water to blood
    Livestock dying
    Thunder, lightning and hail
    Death of firstborn

    I'd say we've checked 'em all off except the last plague and the Republican budget is taking care of that one, so were batting 10 for 10. Global warming: god's middle finger.

  • LocalGirlMakesGoo

    Good thing I spent all last week brushing up on Hobo Code.

    • Crank_Tango

      like "bros before hobos?" oooh you mean the chalk symbols….yes they will definitely come in handy.

      • LocalGirlMakesGoo

        There is actually a chalk symbol I use outside of crack houses denoting 'bros before hobos.'

        • Crank_Tango

          So I take it you're still in rochester then lolSent from my iPhone

  • DustBowlBlues

    Ken Layne praise. Print this one out and pin it onto your bulletin board.

  • DaRooster

    Isn't being "Christian" helping those poor God-fearing,brown hating,hover round riding, despicable people?

    • OzoneTom

      Sure, so I've never been more glad that I'm an atheist.

      I'll leave those worthies to their free will to pull themselves up by their own dusty bootstraps.

  • easynewz

    Nothing here that tax-cuts for the wealthy can't fix.

  • http://wonkette.com/ Monsieur_Grumpe


  • http://wonkette.com Clancy_Pants

    I call bullshit. It's snowing outside my window."The sky is falling the sky is falling" jeeze growup. God would never let global warming happen.

    • OzoneTom

      Same here. It snowed most of the morning and we've had maybe one day without some sort of precipitation in the past three weeks. The drought is clearly a hoax — I'm afraid that Al Gore is making money off of this fallacy somehow and that people in these states are trying to get money from American taxpayers to make-up for their own poor choices.

    • ChessieNefercat

      "God would never let global warming happen. "

      The same God that will allow earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, forest fires, hail storms, blizzards, ice storms, floods, pestilence, and those are just the natural* disasters?

      *Which often seem to provoke man-made ones.

  • stanpan

    Goldurn cowboys musta been smoking in bed again.

  • crybabyboehner

    Senator Inhofe will save them.

  • DustBowlBlues

    Excuse me, but in all this tut-tutting about the okies, no one thought of me? This is the kind of love I get from my wonkeratti colleagues? And who else calls you colleagues? I live on mostly dairy products, so at least a Wisconsin member of the wonkeratti should offer to let me park a trailer house on their front lawn. I mean, shit.

    • mereoblivion

      Come on down (well, up, actually), DBB: here in Madison we await you with open udders.

    • sezme

      Actually you were discussed on page one of the comments by no less than Ken, so there. Anyway you can come visit me in Toronto any time you like. And I'll let you swim in Lake Ontario to your heart's content.

    • OzoneTom

      You can stop by here in North Idaho. It would be nice to have a neighbor with a few teeth.

      • Jukesgrrl

        I think she owns books, too. Something besides the Bible and Sister Sarah's "autobiography."

        • OzoneTom

          Oh man! I'll pay her to live in my front yard!

          Finally — someone worthwhile to get drunk with.

    • ChessieNefercat

      Sniffle. I did. The first thing I thought was that I hoped you were okay, I found you as a reply to some other comment a ways back.

      Of course, maybe you wrote this before I wrote my previous comment. never mind, I've had a long day as a genuine Union Thug Lady.

      I love dairy products, I put cheese in or on everything except tea and cheerios, so you can come and stay with me in the UP. We have winter on the run, and it looks like Dirt is right around the corner!

      • Boojum_Reborn

        You don't put cheese in Cheerios? Or tea? You at least put it in your coffee, right?

        • ChessieNefercat

          Oh well, coffee, of course!

    • sati_demise

      I switched to hemp milk or coconut milk a while ago. Radiation could get all these things, but hemp you can grow in your backyard if you have clean soil and its fairly drought tolerant.

    • tessiee

      Come up to Portland, Bluesy! The daytime high actually broke 60 the other day!

    • DemmeFatale

      You don't want to hear how gorgeous and green it is here in Norcal.
      You're welcome to come here, but our dairy products will soon be tainted by hysterical Cassandras whinging about radiation.

  • crybabyboehner

    Just for you Ken – and for you youngsters too ! – here's Ry and Flaco and co. doing this song. Guitar hijinks begin around 3:40.

    Ry looks like a kid and this was about 12 years after he toured with Jackie DeShannon opening for the Beatles.

    • Jukesgrrl

      I loves me some Ry.

  • Beetagger

    Joad the Plumber.

  • sportshort

    Hey! If we had water we could go into the lemonade business, if we had some lemons. Maybe we can sell dust flavored Kool Aid! Yeah! To all the Californy-bound peeple. They gonna get mighty thirsty.

    Hey! Maybe we can make attractive Ikea-esque furniture outa the bones of the ones who don't make across the barren wastes, like I see on those steam-punk websites, which are looking more and more contemporary all the time.

  • Oblios_Cap

    One Thousand Eyes! EPA! EPA!

    That crazy old man in church was right!

  • hooray4anything

    Part of me wishes Texas did seceed so that when something like this happens and their insufficiently funded emergency response forces can't deal with it, they'll have to ask the US for help in which we could quickly just laugh, laugh, and laugh and tell them to kiss our asses.

  • DustBowlBlues

    OT–I think you asked about my health some time back. Thanks for caring. Everything turned out okay.

    • Oblios_Cap

      Huzzah! You sounded rather bummed there for awhile.

      I've gotten busy at work and haven't been around here as much as I'd like. You think they could at least give me a COLA once in awhile when I'm protecting the public interests, but it's been 5 years and counting.

  • Pithaughn

    Ha! to pay for the things I need to stay alive ( DSL, more RAM, refined petroleum products and NetFlix ) I drove giant vehicles filled with super rich people to and from a well know ski town and their jet aircraft. One of my custom CD's has Peter , Paul and Mary singing This land is my land , this land is your land. Always makes them ( the richie riches) frown. By sneaking it it between "On the road again" and "working 9-5" I was able to get away with playing such a commie hit.
    By the way, it starts with "Willin" sung by Linda Rondstadt. The part about weed, whites and wine tends to make the passengers a little nervous.
    This all started after I realized nothing I did made any difference as to how much the tip was going to be, unless it was terrible weather. They did seem to appreciate arriving in one piece if the roads were white, the sky was white, all white, very scary to the flat landers.

  • MiniMencken

    As the Koch brothers like to sing when they gather around the campfire on their ranch, the old Running BM, "This land is my land/It is not your land/I have a shotgun/You haven't got one/This land was made for only me!"

    • sati_demise

      oh, I love that verse!

  • Jukesgrrl

    and (R-Exxon) after it.

  • Jukesgrrl

    And doesn't Cornyn already have a lock on that fake cowboy attire?

  • Jukesgrrl

    With picshurs, I'm shure.

  • ChessieNefercat

    ""To quote James Inhofe "Drought and wildfires may be the greatest hoax the scientific community has ever played on man". "

    Or God punishing people for whatevs.

    Either way, dumbasses…!

  • ChessieNefercat

    "Man on sheep. You name it. "

    Baaa, yipe!

  • ChessieNefercat

    And my response is that anyone who doesn't know that climate and weather are two different things has proven that they are too stupid to be allowed to say anything on the subject of climate change. Bup bup bup!

    This has actually stopped a couple of water-cooler conversations because people are under the impression that I am nice and apparently are startled to find out that I am not. ("She's mean.")

  • CalamityJames

    “Many drought indicators in east-central Texas have reached the Exceptional Drought (D4) level, and if rain does not materialize soon, intensification of the current drought is likely.”

    This guy must be a MENSA member.

    Or was it NAMBLA?

  • sati_demise

    Oh great!

    Its a drought map, not a map of radiation.

  • tessiee

    Who doesn't?

  • tessiee

    Any way we can aim the wildfires at Crawford?

  • BZ1

    Guess who'se got more than oil, sitting up there, chock full of snow and ice, no, not just North Dakota, them Canajans…

  • tribbzthesquidz

    "poor old Kurt Cobain, who(se wife) blew his brains out 17 years ago yesterday"

  • lulzmonger

    Whoa … that's one big-ass Global Warming Hoax you've got there.
    Good thing there's no heat component to fire or you'd REALLY be hooped.