FARMING: Back to Dust Bowl Days

First came the torrential rains of spring, sweeping away thousands of planted acres in the Midwestern grain belt, gouging great creases in the fields and delaying planting of new crops. Then the rain stopped, and for well over a month now, the sun has risen like a bright brass gong in a white sky. While days, then weeks passed without rain, the sun parched the soil and left corn stalks brittle, stunted and dead. From the Dakotas southward to Texas, from Kansas east to parts of Ohio, the most baleful weather in a generation is raising the specter of...

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