Bread Basket

Found myself looking for a statistic this day, but I could not find it.  It was on the American Farmer, I am doing this from memory, it went something like this, “The American Farmer feeds himself and _________ so many other people.”  But I could not remember if it was his family and 46 others or his family and 125. 

Anyone know which one of the two it might be?

Just north of Okie City up on Seventy-Four highway there is a little town in Logan County by the name of Crescent, Oklahoma.  Small, rural farming community on the plains, nothing all that special about it, except that some of my family lives there.  Wheat farmers and cattle ranchers. 

My mother grew up there with her brothers; they used to walk to school on sandy roads, looking over their shoulders at the fresh footprints in the sand, and marveling at how they looked.  Poor kids, depression raised Okies.  Living in an America when shoes were worn for church, visits to town, school, most of the time they went barefooted.  Not a whole lot of money, grew what they needed, and lived off the land.

This week I was thinking about the CO-OP in Crescent, what a big deal it was when it first was established.  A CO-OP is a co-operative for all those who are not farmers or perhaps not familar with the term.  I was thinking this morning how forming a CO-OP benefited these folks.  How it helped the farmers in the area, and brought new prosperity to their little town.  All the farmers in that town (actually in that surrounding area, other towns too) got together and formed a CO-OP and things gradually got better for them. 

The point being that “pooling their resources paid off for the majority” and it improved the quality of their lives.

One of my apparent drawbacks in life is that I have a fertile mind and over active imagination, if you haven’t noticed by now.  So I am thinking.  “Why do we put up with this S*** from all these two-bit countries around the world that happen to be sitting on vast pools of oil. When we are sitting on this breadbasket of wheat, corn, barely and other agricultural products.” 

Why aren’t we making these American products “a valuable commodity in this so-called world market.”  Especially when the government of the United States gives out ample farm subsidies each year to the American Farmer and U.S. AG Business. 

LET ‘EM EAT THEIR OIL.

If they want to eat beef, if they want a bushel of wheat, corn, maize or soybeans, then let us trade for it.  You give us the oil, and we will help you with the groceries.  We are the world’s largest producer of these products, why aren’t we taking full advantage of it.  Other grain exporting countries such as Argentina, the Soviet Union, Australia, Canada, France and certain areas of the U.K. could join in … We could form a Global CO-OP and trade for what we need.

Which would be a lot better than rushing over and “begging for it” as been the case here lately. This, in my opinion, would certainly beat this form of Texas Chainsaw Economics we have now, which is feed and protect these foreign nationals, while “they bank huge sums of money” and we go farther in the hole.

Before we had a money system in this world, before some banker or politician invented paper money (backed by nothing) we “traded for what it was we needed.” (Barter Systems)  Perhaps it is now time to go back to that, this world banking situation doesn’t seem to be working in our favor.

Last year, Syria imported 890,000 metric tons of corn and maize, 147,000 metric tons of wheat, 483,000 million tons of soybeans.  Our good buddies over there in Iran, they came shopping for 1.8 million metric tons of soybeans, 1.8 million tons of corn/maize, and 231,000 million tons of wheat.  This is just two of the many countries that visited our breadbasket, you can add to that:  Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, Nigeria and Russia even came knocking on our doors, all of them calling for enormous quantities of grains from the United States to feed their people.

Clearly I do not advocate starving people for oil, but why not, trade for what we need?  Here is the rainbow in the entire idea.  Doing this would not sufficiently increase the cost of products to the American consumer at all.  As much as I hate this expression … It is a Win/Win kind of thing.

A global CO-OP makes good sense.  Especially when it is apparent that we have so much of it with which to trade.  Why aren’t we taking full advantage of this obvious tilt on the scale in our favor?  Taking it one step further, I guess the next question would be:  “Why aren’t we doing it right now?”

In case you missed it … Here it is again …. Let ‘em eat their oil, get a taste of what it is like to be on the “receiving end of some of this” like the rest of us. 

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