Monthly Archives: March 2019

Its Time For A New Agriculture Policy

By: Tom Chatham

Once again farmers across America are facing ruin. They are encouraged to grow crops at high cost and little profit and the only people that actually make any money are the bankers, seed companies and the fertilizer companies. Farmers are a pawn in global economics that allow countries to control others by threat of famine.

Farmers live and die at the whim of trade deals. They are the shock absorber for men in suits that care only about numbers. As go the farmers, so goes the nation. A nation cannot survive without its farmers if it wishes to remain a developed nation.

A great deal of pomp is made every time a farm bill is passed as bureaucrats hail the great thing they have done for farmers. They hand out billions in subsidies every year but the vast majority of that money is welfare for large corporate farming interests. It goes to men who work in office buildings.

The government is in a position to actually help the farmers and the population in general if it really wanted to. When farmers have sufficient excess production that they cannot sell into the market for whatever reason, the government has the ability to buy this excess and store it as a strategic food reserve for the nation.

This grain can be stored in facilities near major cities to guarantee supplies in the event of disaster and be rotated out every few years to keep it fresh. This can help keep the market stable and provide a guaranteed market for the crops. It will also give the government bargaining power in trade deals because they will hold the excess grain reserves in the country.

For a few billion dollars a year the government can guarantee the nation has a food supply in the event of crop failures. This is small potatoes when compared to the annual 3.5 trillion budget. Since they will be selling older stores into the market every year they will have income from this venture reducing the annual cost of the program.

Not only will this provide actual benefits to the farmers but for the country. The world food reserves are only about 60 days at the current time. That means the world would start to run out of food in 60 days if this food were not replaced on a continuous basis.

The people of the world have no idea how close they are to famine at any given time and this is especially true for Americans. Without our farmers we will starve and the number of farmers going out of business is about to become a national problem if we do not fix it in time.

The farmers do not need welfare to stay in business. They simply need stable markets that offer reasonable prices. A government storage program would go a long way to helping the situation. Short of that, a national awareness that compels individuals to store extra themselves would help as well.

We are heading into uncertain times where weather anomalies, prices and lack of farmers are building to create a potential catastrophe that will leave many tables empty. We can take many sensible and cost effective measures now that will ensure our survival but we are running out of time. Once our farmers are gone they cannot be easily replaced and neither can the food they produce.

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Why Do Some People Live Paycheck To Paycheck?

By: Tom Chatham

It is common place today to hear of people living paycheck to paycheck. If so many people are living so close to the edge one must ask why? There are many reasons why someone might be in financial distress but one looming question remains. If they lack sufficient funds to live as they do, why do they continue on that path?

It has become evident to me that many people live paycheck to paycheck because they choose to. It seems that many people today decide what standard of living they want and start living it. They get the home, car, clothes, jewelry and other items they view as their birthright. Then they try to find a job that will pay for it all. They are basically doing things ass backwards.

In a normal world a person gets a job and builds a life around what they can afford. They live within their means in other words. This includes having sufficient funds for emergencies so they can continue on for a while if something happens to disrupt their income. This is the way most responsible people have always lived.

Today is different. Most people have never had a good role model to teach them how to handle money. The banker controlled media has led them to a life of debt and despair. The people have been conditioned to spend everything they can get their hands on and then spend any credit they can get. Even though they have been conditioned to live like this they make a conscious effort to do it.

To get off this debt cycle they only need to want to. Many people are paying a lot for monthly rent or mortgage and cannot afford it. They do not have much control over what someone wants them to pay for rent but they can control where they decide to live. Just like they can decide what car to buy and what they buy at the store. Their choices determine how much they have left at the end of the month. Show me someone living paycheck to paycheck and I’ll show you something they pay for and do not need or are overpaying for.

There are people living in some cities right now paying more for monthly rent than I spend on all of my living expenses all year, and that is not an exaggeration. And I am not talking about rich people in expensive homes, just ordinary people in ordinary apartments.

Most people like to live near their jobs for an easy commute but their jobs are usually located in expensive areas that house a lot of working people. The landlords know what people in that area make so rents are adjusted to get the most they can. The ordinary person just tries to get a place as cheap as they can which is usually more than they can really afford.

Instead of doing this they have the option of choosing a longer commute allowing them to get a place in a less expensive area. There are people in my area that work in D.C. every day. That is a 100 mile drive each way every day. They do this because they can earn more money and live in an area with a low cost of living. It takes a lot of dedication to do that but it can pay off in a big way over time.

While it is understandable for someone making $15k – $20k a year to have financial difficulty, there are a lot of people making $40k – $100k a year also living paycheck to paycheck that should not have to. These people are struggling now when things are fairly good but it won’t take much of a drop in the economy for them to go negative. That day is fast approaching and if they do not get their financial house in order now, they may not be able to later and that will force them to change their living habits causing a lot of pain along the way. It is better to do it now while it can be done with minimal pain.