Your article on ethanol (“Bursting The Ethanol Bubble,” August page 30) was very interesting. Those of us in the petroleum producing business do not object very much to ethanol because every gallon of ethanol that is produced uses two gallons of our production. This doesn't do much for the fuel shortage or to reduce pollution though.
Dan Hughes
Dan A. Hughes Co.
Beeville, TX

What About Other Subsidies?

Clint Peck's commentary on ethanol (“Bursting The Ethanol Bubble,” August BEEF, page 30) needs a response. The general tone suggesting Peck's guarded enthusiasm of ethanol is appreciated, but his suspicion of ethanol subsidies is misguided, as is his reliance on outdated and discredited “research.”

I think it's time commodity producers get on the same page. Why isn't the interconnection of beef, corn, and ethanol markets recognized and respected?

Criticize ethanol subsidies if you wish, but acknowledge the similar intent and purpose for other commodity subsidies at the same time. All exist due to government policy, in the public's interest.

Those interests may change over time, as I hope our nation's energy policy will change to become coherent on renewable sources. Until then, the “entrenched, well-organized beneficiary” of the lion's share of energy subsidies will remain the petroleum industry and I'm afraid that won't change until renewable energy is what they sell.

In the meantime, do you dare ask whether the beef, swine, poultry, grain, sugar, milk, cotton, etc., industries “can be weaned where it can live and breathe on its own?” Or will they “continue to be a draw on the resources of our nation?”
Ed Scrock
Elm Creek, NE

Let Ethanol Pay Its Way

I think the point is being missed on the ethanol issue. To claim that imported oil vs. ethanol is a national security issue is self-serving for those making that claim.

Trade between individuals is the greatest tool for peace. Unfortunately, the military industrial complex, ethanol industry, career politicians and others profit from fear mongering.

If individuals in one nation need oil and the oil producers in another country need cash, then there could be no greater incentive to preserve peace. That peace makes less money than special favors granted to business like the ethanol tax break. Not only are we being screwed with higher fuel prices but we also have an economy that's being sucked dry by an adversarial relationship with the world created by those who wish to profit from it.

Instead of having bureaucrats do studies to determine who gets what subsidy, the government should be out of the energy business and let the market work as it has to reward efficiency. When we draw closer to the end of the estimated 200-year supply of oil, alternatives will attract investors and the market will provide.

If the corn promotion folks think ethanol is such a good investment, they are welcome to invest. To force me to do the same is theft. I don't appreciate it.
Fritz Groszkruger
Dumont, IA

ANCW President Writes

It's my duty as American National CattleWomen (ANCW) president to comment on Joe Roybal's September issue editorial “ANCW fights for a beef safety voice” (page 6).

I really hope you don't think that ANCW thinks it's okay to accept E. coli 0157:H7 or any other bad bacteria found in ground beef, that makes children, elderly and others sick. ANCW members are very much in favor of anything that will help the safety of our product, and especially irradiated beef.

Our authorization request (AR) on irradiated ground beef was presented to the ANCW Promotion and Executive Committees. Both committees approved the AR. It was also presented to the board of directors at the summer convention, but as information only. Members really felt this was a very worthwhile project and was needed for beef safety.

I realize that your article was your editorializing, but I did not like your comment in the next to last paragraph. You wrote: “And, woe to CBB members if the ANCW authorization request is again denied.”

The Cattlemen's Beef Board (CBB) works with ANCW. We would not have our projects if it were not for the CBB members approving them. They work with us and support us.
Patti Townsend
ANCW President
Roswell, NM

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