My View From The Country

The Election Games Are Upon Us

The tried and true tactics of attacking your enemy is off and running this election season.

I received an email this week that said “Apparently, I am supposed to be more outraged by what Mitt Romney does with his money than what Barrack Obama does with mine.” My first reaction was to laugh at the irony.

However, it appears that we will once again this election season be subjected to the old tried-and-true tactic of attacking candidates based on personal issues and the politics of special interests and class warfare. I find it amazing that with record real unemployment and historically unprecedented deficits in this country, and the beginning of the collapse of European socialism (much like the fall of the former Soviet Union), very few conversations seem to revolve around reversing the path this nation is on.

Not surprisingly, agriculture hasn’t been mentioned much in the presidential campaign rhetoric, and only on an extremely limited basis at the congressional level. The latest farm bill attacks are a classic example. An anti-agriculture group this week, which not only had an issue with farm subsidies but also a nutritional agenda, made the comparison between subsidies for apple farming and subsidies for corn.

The group contended that consumers were paying for millions of Twinkie snacks (they used the Twinkies due to its inclusion of high-fructose corn syrup) but only ½ of an apple. Of course, there was no explanation about the size of those industries, or any of the meaningful statistics, that would have made the conversation relevant.

Discuss this Blog Entry 5

Anonymous (not verified)
on Jul 27, 2012

Speaking of election games, I've been reading a little history. At a time when FDR was referring to Joe Stalin as Uncle Joe, Joe was using bureaucracy to starve out the landed peasants of the Ukraine. US aid to the Ukraine was being diverted by Uncle Joe. At one point, 10,000 Ukrainians per month were starving to death. After they ate all their livestock and pets, they ate each other. Guards had to be posted at cemeteries to keep people from digging up people to eat. Politics is more than just a difference of opinion.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Jul 31, 2012

Speaking of elections (or almost anything else), isn't it about time for us to all recognize that Troy Marshall doesn't really have anything useful to add to the conversation, and that he really ought to spend his energies doing something other than "writing"?

Anonymous (not verified)
on Jul 31, 2012

You are right Troy should not be writing opinions because they are all one way and contain no discussion points.
I bet he takes his government subsidy for drought relief though.

on Aug 1, 2012

Writing opinion is tough; you put your name and opinion out there for everyone to see, knowing that a number of people won't agree with you. "Anonymous" commenters obviously don't run this risk. If you have something worthwhile to add to the discussion, we invite your comments. Personal attacks intended to solely criticize or disrespect the writer won't be tolerated.

Heber Hammon (not verified)
on Aug 3, 2012

I read editorials everyday by writers from both ends of the political spectrum. Not one of them understands what I face as a food producer in this country. I love to go to BBQ and listen to my liberal friends (I do have a few) talk about the environment, the market, the welfare system. Unfortunately, it's just talk. They drive their cars to the grocery store and buy their food without a thought. The drought this year should teach us that the stories of famine and lack of food and health resources in other parts of the world are real. A mother hold a dying child in her arms while it struggles in death can voice her opinion in the newspaper. One of the things I enjoy most about Troy is he is one of us. I was exchanging some solutions to the drought problem and I saw he was having the same issue I was facing her in Utah. Bad fire, no pasture reserves, feed production hammered. Having to cull early. I read his opinions and I identify with what he is saying. We call for an open market with all our trading partners only to find out their governments are manipulating their local market to keep us out. Why? Because the American producer can compete profitably in any market in the world. I read Troy's comments on the lack of an open market all the time. He gets it. But the difference between my good liberal friends and Troy is he's out there. He take a stand. He defends it. I find that remarkable in a day of polarized opinions.

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What's My View From The Country?

As a fulltime rancher, opinion contributor Troy Marshall brings a unique perspective on how consumer and political trends affect livestock production.


Troy Marshall

Troy Marshall is a multi-generational rancher who grew up in Wheatland, WY, and obtained an Equine Science/Animal Science degree from Colorado State University where he competed on both the livestock...

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