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Responsible federal farm policy in 2010 and beyond


Mon, Sep 27th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

I joined Minnesota Farmers Union and more than 200 farmers and ranchers from across the country in Washington, D.C., September 13-15 for the National Farmers Union Annual Legislative Fly-In.

Meeting with our representatives in Congress allowed us to put a face to the issues currently affecting rural Americans. Meeting face-to-face with the policymakers and voicing our concerns and possible solutions is one of the most important ways we can make a difference for all U.S. farmers.

We also urged members of Congress to consider the importance of family farmers and ranchers when writing the 2012 Farm Bill. Some of the priorities we discussed include safety net programs, rural development and research funding.

In addition to 2012 Farm Bill priorities, we discussed other issues that our members are concerned with, such as ending America's dairy crisis, restoring fiscally responsible taxation, supporting food and agriculture sales to Cuba, and solving energy and climate challenges.

Our farm policy should benefit both consumers and producers. American consumers get more out of their food dollars, even when essential safety net spending is included in the calculations than anyone else in the world. According to USDA's Economic Research Service, in 2008, 9.6 cents of every dollar earned by the average American was used to pay for food. Through federal spending, each American pays about an additional tenth of one cent on farm safety net programs. No country in the world has more affordable, more abundant or safer food. This enviable position results from an effective farm and food policy.

America also needs a federal farm policy because farmers have the least market power of any type of producer and the economy forces them to be price takers instead of price makers. Others decide how much farmers must spend for inputs and how much farmers will receive from the sales of their product. Despite these inequities, farmers are responsible for growing and raising our most important products: food and fuel. A healthy system of agricultural production is important for our national interest and decision-makers in Washington, D.C. must find the right mix of policies that will address persistently inadequate farm income, price volatility and renewable energy.

The 2008 Farm Bill and related agricultural programs comprise less than one-fourth of one percent of total federal expenditures. If the farm safety net was removed or weakened .....
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One Moment Please - A Busy Week For Everyone

Mon, Sep 27th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By Jason Sethre

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

To say it was a busy week last week would be the understatement of the year.

While I could have dedicated endless hours or reporting just ..... 
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Habitat

Fri, Sep 17th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Fall was in the air, cool enough for long-sleeved shirts, a few leaves already falling from trees in a moderate breeze, blue sky occasionally peeking through gray clouds, a good day for watching migrating birds, at least that is what I anticipated. ..... 
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Unpopular programs preserve jobs

Mon, Sep 13th, 2010
Posted in Commentary



The American public wants more and they want it now. We are a people that demand instant gratification. An economy as large as ours doesn't turn on a dime, especially with the severity of the downturn we have experienced over the last severa ..... 
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One Moment Please - More than just a balloon

Fri, Sep 3rd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By Jason Sethre

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

Do you remember the feather that floated throughout the movie Forrest Gump from one scene to the next?

There is a debatable symbolism with ..... 
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One moment, please... More than just a balloon

Fri, Sep 3rd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Do you remember the feather that floated throughout the movie Forrest Gump from one scene to the next?

There is a debatable symbolism with that feather. According to actor Tom Hanks, "Our destiny is only defined by how we deal with the chanc ..... 
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In Congress, there's always a next time

Fri, Aug 27th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

In this era of partisan confrontation and party-line votes on Capitol Hill, it's easy to lose sight of why Congress exists. It is our vehicle for finding remedies to the problems that beset us. It does this by bringing people of different beliefs an ..... 
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One Moment Please - It's all about the people

Fri, Aug 27th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By Jason Sethre

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

This past Tuesday, August 24, the Fillmore County Journal team hosted a county-wide picnic at the South Hill Park in Preston, inviting the public ..... 
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Some liberals I have known

Fri, Aug 20th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By R. L. Sauer

rsauer@fillmorecountyjournal.com

You are expecting a list such as Hubert Humphrey, John Kennedy, Franklin Roosevelt (as a sub teen I remember him as a vague figure in the papers and especially remember the outpouring of ..... 
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