cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Honored Advisor

Re: I am not looking down on you

Totally agree about the failures of the previous administration, which I did vote for, twice, too.  What was our alternative?  Al GORE?????  God, man, I am a hog farmer...and I am not suicidal. 

At least the EPA was held at bay for eight years.  Clinton had created a helluva mess in the eleventh hour, on his way out the White House door. 

I truly believe the two-party system is the real failure, in so far as the average person has no real choice come Election Day.  Every stinking one of them is sold out to lobbyists.  What percentage of most legislative bodies, including Congress, is composed of lawyers?  And, a fairly high percentage is on any given day guilty of all sorts of high crimes and misdemeanors.  I do not really "blame" Obama, but he is something of a disappointment, even to those who thought he was the Second Coming a scant eighteen months ago.   

I have honestly had to stop watching most news right now...it was starting to take a toll.  I am adjusting my lifestyle to accommodate a busy nursing school schedule, starting in about a month; so, will not have nearly the time to watch over the nation, as I typically do, for a couple of years.  You will have to keep things straight for me while I am distracted....

I may or may not pick up the task in the future.  There are a couple of goals I set aside long, long ago, that it is now my desire to reach, before it is truly too late.  I will continue to vote on the second Tuesday in November, but I won't hold out much hope that anything good will come of it, either way. 

0 Kudos
Senior Contributor

Re: I am not looking down on you

Al Gore would have not been a good choice, either.  He likes to impose environmental constraints, only he and others like him will see to it they remain exempt from living under them. The political system is broken.  It is nearly impossible for citizen statesmen, or women to rise up from the ranks and run for office, hold one or two terms and leave.  Political leadership in both parties, all the way down to the local precinct organizations and their financial backers have tight control over the vetting process.  If you don't tout the party line and believe in everything they do, you don't have much chance to succeed.

 

My time for watching over the political process may be ending soon, so, I feel very much like you do, frustrated, disappointed and apprehensive about the future. We need passionate leaders for agriculture that will remain vigilant and protect agriculture's interests and help urban America to recognize the strategic value of a healthy, productive agricultural economy.

 

At least you are working on some great goals to fulfill before time runs out, so to speak.  Best wishes on your work.

0 Kudos
Highlighted
Honored Advisor

Re: I am not looking down on you

Do you remember the news stories about the new mansion the Gore family built in Tennessee a few years ago?  It was such a clear case of "do as I say, not as I do" that I was amazed that anyone ever listened to anything else he had to say on environmental issues. 

Here my family sits, in a "recycled" house, conserving as much as possible of the embedded energy as we could in basically the same footprint that it took up for over a hundred years.  We made one reasonable small addition for laundry and bathroom facilities, which were functions formerly taken care of "out back." 

We have converted to a bio-renewable heat source, year-round also for our water heat, by harvesting sustainably from our own woodlands; and, even more conservatively, mostly salvaging hardwood knowdowns from pine thinnings for the first major firewood harvest.  I spent considerable time over the past year calculating loads and researching possible solar power installations, but the technology just isn't cost-effective yet.  We bid into a grant cycle fourteen years ago for a bio-meth project with EPA for our lagoons, but they funded landfill gasification projects that year. 

Every open acre we own  that is not under roof is pretty much planted to permanent grass cover, and we've built every conservation structure we can figure out a way to fit onto our farms.  My son ran 49 miles of wire to keep animals form grazing in minor tributaries of the Meherrin River.  Every watering station is paved to prevent soil damage, re-using concrete hog flooring gang slats.  I put one whiole small farm into CP-33, and the neighboring one is a major research site for mining reclamation, under a ten-year university's oversight. 

I am waiting with eagerness for the first electric car with a 250-mile battery for my personal transportation, since we are a hundred miles (conservatively) from my most routine outlying travel points.  I will park my present small, 4-cylinder SUV, and use it then only when necessary for full cargo loads when Detroit/Tokyo/Beijing figure out how to deliver a reliable alternative.  

I've spent fifteen years as an unpaid volunteer advisor to a national estuary program, helped to establish the first ag lands preservation/protection program in our quadrant of the state,  serve on the county committee that oversees it, and hold that board's seat on our county planning board, looking out for farmers and forestry. 

When notified,  I write and/or deliver spoken comments to every environmental and land use reg that I am aware of that I possess knowledge enough about to provide a perspective from the real world.  I will do copiou sresearch to make sure my comments are on point. 

With all of these efforts and more, we are still the most villified farmers in the world- people even cut more slack to coca, heroin poppy and marijuana growers - because we raise hogs in North Carolina.  Al Gore and his ilk treat us like Satan's spawn, all the while sitting in their energy-hog homes, beign drive everywhere by a limo that has to make two trips to haul them for every one, and flying their fat hind parts all over the world, to tout their environmental chops. 

Can you say "hypocrit"?

0 Kudos
Frequent Contributor

Re: Debt free farming operations

Its all up to the operator. I am currently still in the development stage of my farm, trying to keep old equipment from dying just long enough to get them paid for and start over again on a different tractor. Now i dont try to buy crap for equipment, but when you deal with older equipment, sometimes doing as much research as you can on it can prove futile. I also relize that to buy newer equipment simply isnt possible. If i can buy a 20 year old tractor and make it last 3 years longer then the loan, then hey i consider myself a winner. My ultimate goal is to get to around 1500 to 2000 acres before my "retirement" age, if i can own most of that and have alot of equipment payed off then i would sell enough to live what i consider comfortably for the rest of my life and still farm a little till i bite the dust. Now who knows whats going to happen. There are alot of things that you dont plan for that makes it tough to ever get over the debt hump. Some guys get lucky, in our area its called oil. The BTO's around here have oil wells, and yes they do have everything payed for and continue to expand with no end in sight, makeing it hard for guys like me. Not saying its not fair,not saying it IS fair, its,  thats just the way it goes for some, those that continue to complain about it are the ones not getting anything done to change their own state of affairs. Remember thunder makes alot of noise, but lighting silently does the work. For me not having any debt is a dream, but again when i think about it, if i have everything payed for whats wrong with going and buying a little newer truck on a loan that i know i can afford, there is nothing wrong with paying a little interest now and again, its more about how you manage that debt then how much you actually have. 

And as far as older guys having 500 to 1000 acres and having it payed for its TRUE, its also TRUE there are alot of guys with the same acreage that have debt piled to the ceiling, goes for the 1000000000 acre farms too. If you truely investigated all the farms in the country, you would probley see an equal amount on both sides of the fence.

0 Kudos
Frequent Contributor

Re: Debt free farming operations

I have to agree with you on some of your points. Even in my own family. My dad has farmed all his life.......and my mom has always worked all her life, my dad makes no profit, everything that he makes goes right back into the farm, and mom has to work for both of them to live. When i was old enough to relize this i vowed that i wouldnt let this happen, now if my wife WANTS to work then thats fine. We are still starting out at the moment and have agreed that the farm will take care of the farm for awhile, but if we get to a point where its going to be a never ending battle then i will change things, whatever it takes to make the farm pay for itself and our lifestyle, that may mean giving it up all together. I worked for a farmer during college that had 10,000 + acres, it was the old man and his two sons and one full time farm worker and me part time. None of their wives worked full time, they worked because they enjoyed their job, and they farmed because thats what they wanted to do. Though with the acreage the guys worked 15 hour days everyday, while the wives went out and played.....haha just how i saw it, but in the end i think its more the way it should be, just my opinion.

0 Kudos
Senior Contributor

Re: I am not looking down on you

Kay, you are one of the few, good voices for agriculture that I've observed.  I applaud you and your family for what you've done. 

0 Kudos
Honored Advisor

Just so you will know...

...running ahousehold and being the main parent dealing with the chiildren - which is what you have to do if your husband works 15 hours a day - is a fulltime job.  Add a parttime off-farm or away-from-home position to that, and those women who you perceived to be "playing" were at least as employed as your boss and his sons. 

Anyone who still talks about not "letting" a woman work in 2010 is kind of missing the progress train. 

0 Kudos
Senior Contributor

Yep, I do know....

I completely relate to your thoughts.  My wife is a full-time professor, teaching English and advanced writing courses, plus administrative duties.  My daughter is employed as a staff writer at a company in VA.  My daughter-in-law is a professor at a college.  While the kids were still at home, I was "Mr. Mom" taking care of the kids, in addition to farming and working part-time at a factory, while my wife was getting her terminal degree and preparing for teaching.  While teaching a sunday school class of older men, the biggest criticism I received was that my wife was not supporting my farming career by staying home and taking care of my needs.  Today, they are silent, as most families have multiple revenue streams in and outside of the farm.

 

 

0 Kudos
Frequent Contributor

Re: Just so you will know...

Same here I do know, the old man that run the show, him and his wife had all the kids out of the house, so his wife did some of financials, worked her part time job and played tennis and golf, nothing wrong with that. I wasent criticizing the wife "playing" just saying she now has time to do things she loves to do, just like all the guys race on the weekends. Also i never said that a women shouldnt work. They have just as much right to be in the work place as anyone. When it comes to my situation, what i mean by the farm takeing care of itself and our lifestyle, is that my wife and i have agreed that our kids do not need to be raised by a babysitter for most of the week. Her fulltime job is going to be mom, i still think thats the way it ought to be. I know it dosent work out that way for everyone.  

0 Kudos
Frequent Contributor

Re: Debt free farming operations

Yeah ive seen alot of that too. Got a neighbor just down the road that parterened up with a higher up that worked for the BIG XII Conference. They bought up 3 sections in one swoop, now the neighbor son is playing around with his little hunting adventure, he built a log cabin and he does hunting tours for fun on the ground they bought.

0 Kudos