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Answer to Government survey

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Tommy

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January 8, 2006



R. Ronald Bosecker

Administrator

USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service



Dear R. Ronald Bosecker,



I received the 2005 Agriculture Resource Management Survey this past week and was bewildered in my attempt to answer many of your questions. Your agency wants to know how many bushels we sold and for what amount; our marketing agreements; property tax paid; any loans we have; check-off dollars paid; and how much money I made both on and off the farm. About the only question I didn’t see is if I slept in the buff or not. The answer to that last sentence is the same as it is to any of your other questions: NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS!



I don’t know why you need to know so much about my operation. Your agency seems to know more about it than I do anyway. Every time I think the market shows signs of being bullish, your agency comes out with a report showing our crop is much larger than previously anticipated or the carryover is much greater than reported. Do you know what these reports do to what is left of our competitive marketing system here in rural America? It drives our markets DOWN, DOWN, DOWN. Because of this, I regretfully decline to answer your intrusive questions about my family farm and politely tell you to MYOB.



Perhaps you could answer a few questions about yourself and your agency for me:

What is your annual income? Do you need subsidies in order to survive?
Have you ever pushed for legislation that would actually help family farmers rather than corporate agriculture?
Do you even know the difference between farmers and corporate agriculture?
Do you know what growers were called before they were called growers?
Have you ever seen baby pigs nestled in a pile of fresh straw anywhere than in the zoo or at an exhibit sponsored by a check-off organization?
Would it bother you if my boss decided that you should take a pay cut in order to compete globally with under-developed nations and to ensure free trade?
Do you have to work another job besides your administrative job in order to pay for obscenely elevated rates for health insurance?
Have you ever wondered where that steak you had for lunch came from? Do you know where the food your children eat came from?
How many people are employed by the USDA?
How many of those employees were previously employed by:
Monsanto
ADM/Cargill
National Pork Producers Council
National Cattleman’s Beef Association
National Corn Growers Association
American Soybean Association
Tyson Foods
Lobbyists retained by members of the American Meat Institute or any of the previously mentioned groups


I guess that is all the questions I have for now. Please remember that all your responses will be kept confidential and will only be shared with members of the media that I consider to be friendly toward family farmers and rural America.



Perhaps you will have better luck with your survey by sending it to Argentina, Brazil, Mozambique, Nicaragua, China or India. After all, farmers in those nations will be working with us in providing your dinner entree’ this evening. Bon apetit!



Sincerely,





J. John Q. Public

Hickory Hills Blacktop

Hickory Hills, USA
 

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