What’s Next?

April 8, 2021

April 8, 2021

Hello everybody out there in farm country. This radio commentary is brought to you by the
National Corn Growers Association, CropLife America, and Renewable Fuels Association.
They are all friends, supporters, and allies of a healthy farm economy and prosperous rural
America. Thank you.

And now for today’s commentary –

The weather is starting to warm up, and I am excited and looking forward to seeing that corn
planter knifing seed in the ground. I love planting season, but harvest is even better. The ag
industry sees a very good year on the horizon. Grain and soybean prices are pushing up into
territory we haven’t seen in 5 or 6 years.

With millions of vaccine shots being administered the pandemic should fade and normal life will return. U.S. employers added 916,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate fell to 6%. That is twice as many jobs as were added in February. Consumer confidence is up and our economy is on the rebound. Our Federal government should be working together to capitalize on the growing economy. During the presidential campaign Biden promised bipartisan government. “The American people voted for unity and compromise.”

After spending $5.4 trillion last year to stimulate this economy, how much more do we have to
spend? President Biden’s $2.3 trillion infrastructure bill is a socialist wish list. Only about 10%
of the money in the bill is marked for infrastructure. I’m not suggesting the other money in the
bill other than that 10% is not worth debating and considering, but it should not be in this bill. I
don’t know how we will pay for all the debt we are adding to the huge debt load that we already
have. Let’s remember what British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher once said, “Socialism
works okay until you run out of other people’s money.” The well-respected former Democratic
Secretary of the Treasury Larry Summers had this to say, “This bill could funnel too much
money into the economy, spark inflation, and crowd out other priorities.”

One other concern that I have is the tax plan that could raise money to help pay part of the bill. We could raise the corporate tax some – maybe from 21% to 25%. Taxing the rich sounds good but we shall see how that would be done. My biggest tax concern is the possibility that Congress will want to raise the estate tax. My farm is a family business and has been in the family for 200 years. 98% of farms and ranches in U.S. are family owned. Can small businesses such as farms survive a huge tax at death?

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