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Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post

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Larry NEIL
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:36 am    Post subject: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I'd like to reply to this lopsided view that is full of misleading infances in a FACTUAL and to the point way. Froma Harrop is known for Her liberal slant on all subjects. Not trying to start arguments, just need the true facts, thanx.
'FEDS SUBDIZE RISK ON FARMS AS WELL AS BEACHES"
As global warming causes more serious and frequent shoreline flooding, indignation rises over federal programs helping owners of beach properties rebuild in places the ocean wants to take back. Superstorm Sandy was a lollapalooza in terms of waterfront damage and demands on the FEMA recources.
But while asking why taxpayers must subsidize waterfront devlopment in areas of increasing threat from climate change, we should ask why weather-related questions stop at the shoreline.
The Federal Government spends a fortune protecting Farmers' incomes in drought prone tregions that are going to get hotter and dryer. That encourages people to grow thirsty crops where they shouldn't.
"The Federal crop insurance program is far worse in many ways than the the flood insurance in the incentives it gives farmewrs to do things that are risky," Craig Cox, who covers farm policy at the Enviromental Working Group, told me.
Consider the case of Seth Baute, a farmer in Bartholomew County, In.. Thanks largely to the taxpayers, he actually made more money after losing 60% of his corn crop to drought than he would have had the rainfall been adaquate. (for growning corn, that is)
How did thjis happen? The story begins in 2000, when Congress replaced a more modest farm support program(paying out if drought, hail or flood substantially reduced the average yeild) with an immodest program actually guaranteeing a farmer's income. Taxpayers on average pick up two-thirds of the premium.
When the Federal insurance policy is written in the spring, the crop is covered at the projected price. But if the price of corn goes up in the growing season, so does the insured price. Thanks to the revenue protecdtion program, even farmers whose crops withered into dust were paid according to the inflated price of corn.
As explained by Marcia Zarley Taylor on The Progressive Farmer Website, the Baute family combined their federally subsidized 85 percent revenue protection policy with some private insurance. The result was that the family made 110 percent of what it expected before the drought, though it lost over half the crop.
Interesting that in the intense budget talks in Washington so little is being said about this bizarre transfer of wealth to farmers, which will cost $90 billipon over the next 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office projections. But wait, there's more.
The arirculture committee leaders are prop[osing to add another layer of federal spen ding-a whole new generation of farm subsidies that pick up larger share of the deductable on federally subsidized crop insurance. Both the House and Senate versions include three such deals, taylored to specific crops. These new revenue subsides would add between $25 billion and $35 billion to the $90 billion.
Last spring, the ranking Republican on the Senate Agriculture Committee, Pat Roberts of Ks., expressed his determination to keep the new layer:"Anyone that wishes to offer an amendment to harm this agreed-upon product will be taken to Dodge City, Ks. and hung by the neck until they are dead."
So then, why not build your beach mansion on the shifting sands? Why not plant corn on parched land? After all, Uncle Sugar is garaunteeing you, flood or drought-unless the taxpayers get fed up enough to stop the game.
(gritting my teeth as I copy this)
 
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rrlund
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:50 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

As bad as that dope that I heard on the news last week addressing some "climate change symposium" or whatever the h#ll it was. The guy was actually CRYING,begging the UN to do something to stop the devastation that he claims IS taking place due to global warming.

You have to wonder how such people rise to positions that allow them to even be a part of such things.
 
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Larry NEIL
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 3:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

No kidding Randy. In most cases I can just shake my head and forget it. This is so blatent that I really want to send an informative letter to editor of our local paper. The slant She put on the subsidies is like every farmer in the US is a FAT CAT that is being supported by the taxpayers!
 
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 4:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

With the price of inputs,that'll never happen. As soon as somebody thinks we made a dollar,there's two people there trying to take a dollar and a half away from us.
Reminds me of that episode of Green Acres when they found out Oliver made a profit of something like $16 and some odd cents. Everybody was trying to hit him up for just that amount.
 
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Larry NEIL
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 4:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Gotta be pushin' $500.00/acre now isn't it?
 
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 7:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I am so sick of news people and politicians I could scream!!!!It is still a fact that the folks of this country enjoy the best and cheapest food in the world...
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 2:56 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Fact of the matter is, most farmers have made a decent return on investment the past few years. So if you just happened to have jumped into the profession in the last few years, and you did so without accumulating debt, you "got rich". But we all know you don't get in the business without some debt. And you surely didn't get in on a big scale, and in a short period of time, without debt. That has a way of being overlooked by critics when we have a good income year. Then there's those of us who've been at it for several decades. We've stayed at it, just treading water, through some pretty lean years in order to get to this period of time where there is money to be made.

Long story short, there aren't many business' where you risk so much for what averages over time to often be such a relatively small return. Look at what it cost's to put a crop in the ground. Look at equipment cost. Look at what land is going for. I've talked with businessmen in other professions that could not believe the low return on investment that it takes for the average farmer to say he had a good year. Some farmers have millions on the line each year. We deserve to make a decent income considering what we risk.

And where were those critics of what we're making now when the 80's had it's hands wrapped around our throats. Makes you want to wrap your hands around THEIR throats.
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 4:44 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Govt has felt that the crop insurance subsidies are cheaper for the govt than the old system of special bail-out programs to react to crop disasters as they came up. The insurance program as it's set up really saved the taxpayers a lot of money the past 2 years as we've had a lot of disaster the past 2 years!

However, I'm not a big fan of the current insurance setup.

1. It appears there is room in it for a lot of fraud.

2. There are costlier options that ensure a profit. Most insurance protects against disaster losses, keeps you in business another year. I'm not sure we should be able to insure an outright profit per acre? Get your costs back = good, but insure a profit, I'm not sure that is a good thing?

3. In poor crop years, we need to try to grow every bushel we can. Food supplies around the globe are kinda tight. Instead, with the current set of insurance you plant once, and if the crop is wiped out, that's it, you sit back and wait for fall insurance check. It only hurts you to try to replant and make some sort of harvestable crop. Same with Prevented Planting, it makes more sense to not plant the fields late than to try planting a real late bean or alternative crop and harvest 1/2 of a normal crop....

We have shifted from trying to grow as much crop as we can for the conditions, to just trying once and then give up on producing anything on that land. Not good for the consumers of the world. The old ad hoc disaster payments encouraged farmers to grow or harvest something from the ground, so livestock producers got something out of the old way - some sort of feed or forage at least. Now it's best to harvest nothing at all from disaster acres...

4. With solid insurance behind them, the large farm operations can quantify their risk to their bankers, and become even larger. In short, with less risk it is easier for the big to get even bigger. It's natural for farms to get larger, but this insurance program speeds this up a lot.

So I'm not really a fan of the current crop insurance programs. I think they went too far in some ways, and encourage less production of feed and food, not more, while favoring the larger farms to be able to barrow more with little risk.

Sort of a bad snowball out of control.

The concept of subsidised crop insurance isn't bad, but how they are currently doing it seems to have a lot of negatives that should be fixrd.

Unfortunately what city folk har me say is, 'save tax dollars cut farm programs because thwy are bad!!!!' Not what I amsaying at all. I'm saying the current program took off in a bad direction, and needs some fixing, some changes, to keep things fair, to keep livestock producers in business, to cover production costs not insure profits.

--->Paul
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:57 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Has to be. Seed corn alone this year is gonna set you back $100 an acre. If you're renting ground and paying high rent,that's gonna be the big variable.

A neighbor woman passed away the other day. I can't help remembering being in the bank with her years ago,both of us waiting to see the loan officer. She was saying then that they were claiming all things considered,it was going to cost $100 an acre to grow corn that year. Made me feel sick to my stomach just thinking about it. Ah,the good old days.
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 7:04 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Hasn't worked out so well for everybody. If you scroll down about to the middle of the page,there are a couple of links to related stories.

Real interesting to click on the comments link. I knew they had to have stepped on a few toes to have grown so large so quick. Seems some of the locals aren't that sorry to see them in big trouble.
Stamp Farms bankruptcy

 
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Larry NEIL
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 8:19 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Thanks for the replys and advice, I appreciate the insight you have provided me with.
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 8:43 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I've been following their plight for a couple weeks now. This time last year, they were being held up as a model of efficiency.

There are exceptions to every rule. I'm more than sure their issues can be traced back to a single miscalculated move or poor decision that snowballed on 'em.

And there seems to be an ever growing mistrust/hatred towards "big business" in this country. That said, I'm not surprised with the negative comments.

In the end, no business, large or small should attempt to grow faster than it's ability to manage assets and liabilities. Seen many a farmer bound for success until they reached a point where they couldn't control events.
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 8:59 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Yep. Anybody in business who hasn't known hard times is bound to make a lot more mistakes than those who have. Those of us who farmed through Carters grain embargo and all the trouble in the 80s know better than to take the chances we took before all that hit the fan. I think they call it a normalcy bias. A belief that just because something has never happened,it never will.

The wife and I were district winners in the Outstanding Young Dairy Couple contest back in the day. We represented the district in the state contest. I went on to be on the District Nominating Committee in the Dairy Co-Op later on and was in on picking the district winner. Seems like there was no middle of the road there. The winners usually went on to either be on the State Board of Directors,or out of business in a few years. When you're talking young people,I don't know that giving a big award is always a good thing. Some can handle it,some get a big head and get over confident.
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 9:07 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

The only award I ever wanted was to have these words on my tombstone;

He was a lifelong farmer who worked hard, took care of his family, never once doubted his own methods, and died owing no one.

I'd rather be consistently average over a lifetime than one moment of glory and a hard crash at the end of the road.
 
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 9:40 am    Post subject: Re: Reply to OP ED on farm subsidy-long post Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Ya because that farm is all that some of those people had as their identity. Once they loose it in a big flash,nobody even knows their name anymore. You can run in to them somewhere and all of a sudden they don't seem like such big shots anymore. I've farmed all my life,probably too old to do anything else now,will keep on farming as long as my health lets me,but I at least try to stay diversified in my social life so when I do quit (if farming doesn't kill me in my tracks),I'll at least have a life after farming and can live it with my head high.
 
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