A Texas Rancher looks at Y2K

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From Texas Agriculture, Little Spouse on the Prairie, by Lana Robinson, Field Editor. Lana's monthly column is usually about her husband, "Mel" and this is "supposed" to have been written by him.

"Ever'body's yappin' 'bout the Y2K, Predictin' a meltdown is comin' our way, Worryin' that computers will go on the blink, An' brang the nations of the world to the brink, Of certain disaster, or at the very least, Cause a whole lotta people a whole lotta grief.

But farmers an' ranchers got a jump on the crisis, 'Cause the bottom done fell out on commodity prices, An' much of the world can't buy our stuff, 'Cause they've run outta money an' times are tough. Besides all that, we've had drought after drought, An' when we least need it, a flood comes about;

It carries off our livestock, leaves ruts in our fields, Warshes out our fences and reduces our yields. A strang of bad years has left lots o' guys reelin', Some of 'em numb, but most of 'em feelin', The odds are against 'em, an' thur's no way to win, But the Wall Street Journal says thangs ain't so grim.

Why, accordin' to the Journal, farmers's got it good, Thangs is rockin' 'long jist as they should, Overall farm income's up, they say, (If I showed 'em some swamp land, reckon what they'd pay?) The economy's a ginnin', an' bidness is boomin', So why all the pessimism, doomin' an' gloomin'?

Wonder who thur pollin' in this here nation, To come up with this nonsense, this rosy information? Thur's brokedown equipment in the EPA, Bankers an' tax collectors demandin' that you pay, Escalatin' costs, world markets declinin', Try tellin' that to Washington, an' they jist thank yore whinin'.

Ain't none of 'em heard 'bout rootworms an' weevils, Aflatoxin, hornflies, an' all them evils? Grasshoppers, bollworms, aphids, an' such? Compared to these foes, the millenium bug ain't much. Ain't no computer bug, virus, er flu, Can skeer us farmers after all we been through.

So save all yore warnin's an' Y2K hype, Fer the wimps, an' weenies, an' 'fraidy cat types. With stocks, an' bonds, an' savin's accounts, 'Stead o' notes that are due an' checks 'bout to bounce. The way I see it, if the whole thang blows, Thur won't be no trace of whut you an' me owes!"

-- Hardliner (searcher@internet.com), April 05, 1999


How sad.

Mike ==================================================================

-- Michael Taylor (mtdesign3@aol.com), April 05, 1999.

I work in the ag sector and it is true that foreclosures on small family farms and ranches are running rampant. Many historic (100 yr+) operations cannot get financing needed to continue operations this year. Commodity prices to producers are often below production cost, yet each farmer/ rancher in CA feeds an average of 129 people. The federal government has leveraged the economic climate with prohibitive regulations in a current massive push to acquire control over farmland in the West. Control the food and water resources and you control the people. My ranchers laugh at y2k - they have no computers and their horses are compliant. The ole John Deere was built in Eisenhower's day. Been working for the past decade to bring some into the 20th century. Now I'm sorta glad they've resisted.

-- marsh (armstrng@sisqtel.net), April 06, 1999.

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