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Thread: The 80s Killed Some of the "Best"..

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    The 80s Killed Some of the "Best"..

    1985 (The Des Moines Register) - The hands that killed them are the hands that farmed the land, that fed the cattle, that raised the hogs.

    Weathered hands. Strong hands. Their own hands.

    Gordon Geiken drove a pickup truck down a dirt path near his Vinton farm, pointed a shotgun at his head, and died.

    Marvin Reed walked into the garage of his riverside Iowa Falls home, and he, too, turned a gun on himself.

    Steven Meeker went to an outbuilding on his Letts farm, strung rope around a beam, and laid a noose around his neck.

    The three Iowa farmers all committed suicide in a single week – the seven days from September 20 to 26.

    None of them knew each other.

    Their deaths are related only because they show that, as years of affluence yield to years of anguish, these are desperate times on the world’s richest farmland.

    Suicide on the farm is always a delicate subject but more important during times of financial struggle in agriculture.

    What’s most shocking about the article isn’t the fact that a wealthy farmer ended his life with a shotgun.

    Or that a young farmer, only 32 years old, ended his with a noose.

    Or the fact that three farmers in Iowa committed suicide in one week.

    What’s shocking is this wasn’t the peak of farmer suicide rates. In fact, today’s suicide rates for male farmers are 50% higher than they were during the 1980s.
    Last edited by Karl; 10-10-2018 at 10:22 PM.
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    Well, they should stop killing themselves.

    It's just dirt.

    How's that for sympathy?
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    Imagine having the most important job in the world and worrying yourself to death about if you can pay your bills or not.

    Ive had to serve court papers to farmers who couldnt pay bills are are now being sued, Ive heard "the milk checks havent been good lately" too many times, it just kills me to hear that stuff.

    But that reminds me: I went to the store the other day and bought nothing but 3 pounds of burger, a gallon of whole milk, and some orange juice. It was $20. That is all I got for $20. That is just insane...how is a single farmer struggling? How is anyone else making it? Why does food cost so damn much?
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    Permanent solution to a temporary problem. The farmer is at the beginning (low end) of the food chain. As more layers of bureaucracy are added, the end cost rises.

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    Almost everything is becoming corporate farming these days, small ma and pas have been pushed out, Monsanto sells seed that is sterile so next year you have to go back to them for more seed whether or not you had a good year, 99% of our corn supply is of the same breed and ripe for a famine of the type that got the potatos in Ireland, growth hormones, genetic altering of corn and wheat, I hope Monsanto knows what they're doing )sarcasm).

    We need more local supplies, even if that's people growing tomatos in their back yard and bringing them to a farmers market once a week. I'm not too good on eating something like a banana bread someone made somewhere, I've never seen thier kitchen at home, it's probably OK but maybe not, I like regulations in that sense, but things like fruit, produce and even meat you see what you're getting, can inspect it and make a judgement for yourself.

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    My feelings:

    First off, a certain percentage of people will kill themselves no matter what. That's just the way the human race is.

    Second: There are jobs & then there are jobs, they aren't all the same. Off the top of my head I know that being in the military & farming are both identity type jobs in that they change you (inside). Farming is really bad because it's not only a way of life but it's a declining way of life. By that I mean that as advances are made in farming they produce more & are needed less. And a major problem that is real obvious is that farmers are so far removed from the people they supply. By that I mean that each person that "touches" the farm products between the farmer & the consumer takes part of the profit out of farming. There's a lot of those middlemen. For instance if "beans" were grown 50 miles from where I live I wouldn't buy them out of the field. They would be picked & shipped off (shipping cost) to be canned somewhere. The canning company would tack on their cost. After that they go to a warehouse (added costs). Then they would be shipped again (shipping cost) to a store who adds their cost to the canned beans. Everybody in the chain makes a profit but only the farmers run the real risk of no crop. That's the way it works in modern society & it's a pretty good system but by it's nature the farmers get the short end of the stick.

    I'll also add that there are a lot of family farms where it's a lifestyle that has the problem of the numbers not adding up. Generally the smaller the farm the less cost effective they are. People being people will try to hang on to a failing lifestyle until they can't any more. And if your identity is wrapped up in being a farmer & you loose the farm, well that's the end for some people.

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