Food or Fuel

January 31 2007

I was on my Illinois farm this past week and had the privilege of speaking to the Knox County Farm Bureau. It was so much fun to see so many familiar faces of Farm Bureau comrades that I had worked with some 30 or 40 years ago.

It's no surprise to you, I'm sure, but the mood is up beat -- excited about $3 corn and a brighter future.

The President wants to reduce gasoline usage by 20 percent in the next 10 years. "Ethanol to the rescue."…

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January 24 2007

The St. Louis Post Dispatch quotes a mother buying milk. Here's what she has to say: "I'm not sure what it is, but I think it's bad."

So, what is so bad? Milk from cows that receive a supplement called bST that increases their milk production. It was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1993. We've already been drinking the milk for 13 years with no ill effects. The milk from a cow that is given the supplement is identical to the milk from a cow that does not receive the…

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Cabinet Secretaries Lunch

January 17 2007

For more than 20 years, we have had a Holiday Luncheon for Cabinet members. It started in the Reagan Administration. Only 6 of us attended the first one in 1982, including Vice President Bush. The tradition has continued and grown over the years. We now invite all current and former Cabinet members -- both parties.

This past Holiday season, 42 Cabinet members enjoyed a festive lunch at the historic Blair House. In years past, we have had members…

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Immigration Reform

January 10 2007

The Ag industry from the farmer to the consumer is under assault. The seriousness ofthe situation is just now becoming obvious. A six-state raid on a major U.S. meat packer has sounded the alarm. 1300 employees were arrested. The work disruption cost Swift & Co. $30 million. Dairy and vegetable farmers in Western New York are operating in a climate ofconstant fear. Will their farm be the next to be raided? The workers are afraid ofwhat will happen to them.…

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Cloned Animals

January 3 2007

We are going to have another food fight. I knew it would be just a matter of time from the day that Dolly made the headlines. Now, the Food and Drug Administration released a 678-page analysis concluding that milk and meat from cloned animals is safe to eat. No risk. Drink it down. Stick a fork in it. Steven F. Sundlof, FDA's Chief ofVeterinary Medicine, said, "There's just not anything there that is conceivably hazardous to public health."

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