Filed under: church, friends, safety | Tags: accident, children, farm, friends, friendship, funeral, safety
Today was the funeral of a friend. It is very difficult to lay to rest a person who should not have died. The accident he was involved in tore him away from a wife and three children.
He was a gentle man with a huge heart. Quick to help his neighbor. Dedicated to his job. Easy to talk to. A huge loss to the community.
He will be missed. Rest in peace friend.
Filed under: Ag education, Farm, farm animals, Farm Bureau, safety, school | Tags: accident, Agriculture education, children, farm, Farm Bureau, farm safety, safety
For several years now I have been talking to 4th graders about safety on the farm. This Farm Bureau project is vitally important to help protect our children and their parents. Over the years I have found several stories that I can add to punctuate the presentation.
When we talk about safety around belts, pulleys, sprockets and chains I tell about the time when I could have lost three fingers on my right hand. It’s a personal story that turned out well, I still have my fingers.
When we talk about driving on slopes and the possibility of rollovers I tell about the time I rolled a tractor. How it was not the first time I had driven on that slope, but it still happened. That also turned out well.
When we talk about auger safety I have a story about a man who lost his arm in an auger accident. The story is not an easy one for those who listen. I let them know the details so that they will know this is serious business.
Unfortunately I now have a story to tell of a friend who lost his life in a power-take-off (PTO) accident. We will never know the details since he was alone when the accident happened. The fact that he left a wife and three children alone adds to the sorrow. This will not be an easy story to tell.
Please let those around you know that you love them. Keep reminding them to be careful. Learn how to be safe around machines and animals. Know safety rules and follow them. The loss of body parts is inconvenient, the loss of life is tragic. Please be safe out there.
Filed under: Biofuels, cars, Corn, ethanol, Farm | Tags: biofuels, car, cars, Corn, EPA, farm, jobs
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that they will raise the amount of ethanol that can be blended into our fuel from 10 percent (E10) to 15 percent (E15) for all vehicles built in the last decade.
The decision today to permit E15 for 2001-to-2006 model year vehicles follows an October decision by EPA to permit blends up to E15 in vehicles 2007 model year and newer.
The Environmental Working Group says that the “only real winners” with E15 are corn farmers and ethanol producers. I’d say they are a bit short sighted.
Who benefits? Maybe suburban moms who want clean air for their kids? Small business owners who want to end cartel-driven oil shocks to our economy? Anyone who wants to keep our dollars here instead of sending them overseas? One of the biggest winners will be the American worker. Up to 136,000 jobs will be created by this regulation change, and many of those jobs will be in small town America, out where all of the ethanol refineries have been and are being built.
There will be new bio-refineries built. More jobs for truck drivers and train operators. There will be more stores and shops kept open because of jobs to provide supplies to workers and their families in rural America. Farmers will have new sources of income as the need for non-corn based ethanol grows. They will have to buy new machinery to harvest grasses and stover that will fuel those ethanol plants.
These are American jobs that cannot be outsourced. Good paying, skilled employee jobs for rural America. Just what our country needs right now.
Filed under: charity, history, hunger, make a difference, Politicians, Politics | Tags: Food, history, hunger, JFK, politicians, politics
Today is the anniversary of JFK’s presidential speech that had the famous phrase “Ask not what your country can do for you . . . Ask what you can do for your country.”
I’m beginning to think this country has become a welfare state. More and more I see people with their hands out asking that their government give them something. They expect that the government will give them everything. That is not the U.S. of A. I was born in. That is not the country that our fathers fought to build and protect.
Our constitution gives us the right to pursue happiness. It does not say that we will be happy. There are opportunities in our world today for everyone to work. It may not be the job we want, but it is work. I see folks complain about our illegal aliens here in the U.S. but most of them are here doing jobs we don’t seem to want to do. If you want to eat, get out there and work. Our country was built on hard work, not on a life of constant vacations.
Our entertainers have done more than anyone to break our country, and it is our fault. We value major league sports and movie actors more than we do our teachers and police force. We pay major amounts of money to watch entertainment, and then complain that the prices in the grocery store are going up a few pennies.
We are truly blessed in this country to have so much that we can complain about it. Next time you feel that the government owes you something, check out how much you have given to your country and to your neighbor first. Ask what you can do for others, before you ask for a handout.
A democracy can only last until its people realize they can vote themselves something for nothing. I’m afraid we are about to reach that breaking point, that the country that has given us so much will cease to exist. It is time for all of us to do, not ask.
Filed under: Biofuels, Corn, ethanol, Farm, Politics | Tags: biofuels, Corn, ethanol, politics
Congress, in its lame-duck session, extended for two years the 45-cent- per-gallon tax credit for ethanol after a great deal of squabbling by both conservatives and many environmentalists. That credit will cost U.S. taxpayers $6 billion to $7 billion in 2011.
With much less controversy, Congress extended $35 billion in tax credits to the U.S. oil industry for oil depletion allowances, incentives for deep sea wells and rapid depletion allowances on equipment costs and other factors.
In fact, the oil industry enjoys the profits that come from both of these tax credit programs, because the ethanol subsidy only goes to the refineries that blend the biofuel with gasoline for sale to consumers. Ethanol producers do not benefit from those credits.
Sounds like government. Payoff the big guy, who really doesn’t need the money, so that the little guy has a chance.
Filed under: Animal care, cars, cold, Corn, Farm, food, harvest, hunger, Minnesota, safety, School bus, snow, Soybeans, travel, Trees, weather, Wildlife, winter | Tags: car, cars, cold, Corn, deer, farm, feeding deer, Food, Minnesota, school bus, snow, Soybeans, wildlife
On my morning bus route I have been seeing quite a few deer lately. Due to the cold and snow they have gathered from their scattered summer haunts to protected areas, usually in river valleys. One of their favorite areas has been a soybean field that was not harvested due to high water. The beans spent too much time underwater this fall and had to be abandoned.
A well meaning person left some corn along their path so that the deer could have a high energy snack. Unfortunately the corn was left too near the road, and four deer died.
To leave the corn for the deer was nice. But because the snow was deep it is hard to get very far from the road. Not thinking of the consequences the easy way was taken and four cars hit deer in that area in one night.
Please, if you are going to feed the wildlife, feed them in a safe area. Get the food well back into the woods or in a field. The carnage of dead deer, dented cars and the possibility of people being hurt because of the feeding of wildlife is not worth the easy way out.
Filed under: blizzard, cold, Minnesota, seasons, snow, travel, weather, winter | Tags: cold, Minnesota, snow, trees, weather
It’s snowing again. If it doesn’t move it gets covered by snow.
I guess it shouldn’t be such a shock, it is after all Minnesnowta and it is winter, but this is getting to be a bit much. Some areas of southwestern Minnesota, northwest Iowa and eastern South Dakota could have over 10 inches before this storm is done tonight.
So far we don’t have much wind. Out here in the prairie that is the true devil in the weather details. Ten inches of soft fluffy snow is really kind of beautiful. When the wind whips it around it gets to be deadly stuff.
For those of you not from Minnesnowta, don’t believe the hype that we have 9 months of winter and 3 months of tough sledding. Yes, it can snow as early as September, and as late as June, but really our weather is not a lot different than Chicago, Boston or New York. We may get a few “wild hair” storms, but snow rarely comes to stay before December and is gone by April.
Here’s the real kicker, we have the equipment to move the snow we get, fast. When folks from a warmer climate get an inch of snow, they are traumatized, we get 10 inches and it has been moved out of the way of commerce the next morning.
So welcome to Minnesnowta folks. Come visit our lakes, forests and wonderful cities. We have something fun for you to do any month of the year. However, if you cannot handle a little snow in the winter, just send your money.
Filed under: blizzard, cars, cold, Farm, rain, science, seasons, snow, travel, weather, winter | Tags: farm, rain, snow, weather, wind
With all of our technology humans like to think that they can control everything around them. After all we have heated and air conditioned homes, cars and workplaces. We go where ever we want in our cars, trains and planes. So when there is a flood, mudslide, volcanic eruption or snow storm that stops us we are indignant. The truth is we are not in charge.
As a farmer I live closer to the earth. Yes, I have A/C and heat in my home, tractor and combine, but I live with the weather. Many of my jobs are dictated by the weather. We have jobs that stop when it rains. Hot, cold or dry weather can reduce our harvest. Snow storms mean extra work. Windy conditions can stop certain jobs and too much wind will damage our buildings and crops. We know that we are not in charge.
Mankind has not yet conquered the weather despite all of his technology. The next time you find yourself delayed or stopped by the weather, just remember, you are not in charge. We on the farm live with that realization every day.
Filed under: history, make a difference, Minnesota, time | Tags: Agriculture education, history, Minnesota, starting a blog
When you start out to write a blog you always wonder if it will be successful. It seems that I have been and I thank those of you who read my ramblings for making it so. Below is a summary of the Minnesota Farmer past.
The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:
The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.
A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 4,600 times in 2010. That’s about 11 full 747s.
In 2010, there were 217 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 266 posts. There were 101 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 57mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.
The busiest day of the year was March 29th with 79 views. The most popular post that day was Organic or not organic.
Where did they come from?
The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, WordPress Dashboard, alphainventions.com, en.wordpress.com, and jplovescotton.wordpress.com.
Some visitors came searching, mostly for empty grocery shelves, empty shelves, empty grocery store shelves, rain 90 days after fog, and lutefisk dinners minnesota 2010.
Attractions in 2010
These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.
Organic or not organic March 2010
Where have all the farmers gone August 2010
4 comments and 1 Like on WordPress.com,
Snow Sculpture December 2009
Average farm size decreases September 2010
Lutefisk season December 2010